The photo above captures the beautiful smile of six-year-old Alexis Case, known by those close to her as "AJ."
Unfortunately, the image currently appears on a GoFundMe.com page created to raise money for her funeral expenses.
Alexis died after her uncle, Danny Case, hit her with a truck.
Case, who's facing charges that include vehicular homicide, had been drinking prior to the crash, according to arrest reports, and he had a history of driving under the influence. After learning that Alexis hadn't survived the crash, however, he's said to have asked, "Why did you pick me God, why me?"
According to KRDO-TV, the incident took place at around 7:15 p.m. on Friday, March 20, on the 500 block of Starlite Drive in Pueblo, an area captured in the following interactive graphic. If you have problems seeing the image, click "View Larger Map."
The affidavit obtained by the station maintains that Danny Case had been arguing with Charles Case — his brother and Alexis's dad — prior to the crash.
He said his intention was to park his truck at the address. But he reportedly blew through a stop-sign-controlled intersection, then drove onto the lawn of the home, where Charles and Alexis were walking.
Danny allegedly hit both of them before smacking into the house, leaving a hole at the point of impact.
Both Charles and Alexis were hurt — and she subsequently succumbed to her injuries.
The amount of alcohol Danny consumed prior to the crash is a matter of dispute. He told police he'd only had two beers, which he'd started consuming shortly after noon and had sipped slowly. However, the affidavit describes him as having bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and the strong smell of alcohol — all the indicators of intoxication that are typically checked off in such reports.
In addition, KRDO notes that Danny was busted for DUIs in 2003, 2005 and 2007.
His punishment: probation.
While speaking with investigators, Danny insisted that he would never have done anything to harm Alexis. But when he was told at the jail that she'd died, he's said to have personalized his grief, wailing, "Why did you pick me, God, why me?"
The aforementioned GoFundMe.com page chooses to focus the attention on Alexis. It's introduction reads:
Our precious angel was taken to be with the Lord yesterday evening due to a tragic accident. The family is asking friends and loved ones to help with funeral expenses. If you can find it in your heart to help this grief stricken family it would certainly help lighten their burden during this difficult time. Any amount would be deeply appreciated.
At this writing, the page's $6,000 goal has been exceeded by $400. In the meantime, another benefit dinner has been scheduled for 3:30 to 8 p.m. Saturday, March 28, at St. Leander Church in Pueblo. For more information, click here.
As for Danny, he was arrested on suspicion of vehicular homicide, driving under the influence, reckless driving, and driving without proof of insurance.
The bond placed on him: $150,000.
Our condolences to the friends, family and loved ones of Alexis Case.Michael Roberts.
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