Zoe Reardon, an 18-year-old Atlanta, Georgia woman was arrested and charged on Monday, May 14 for the deaths of a mother, child, and family friend in a car accident that occurred last year, while she was allegedly using her phone behind the wheel.
On September 9, 2017, Reardon (who was 17 at the time) had struck three pedestrians while driving in her gray jeep on Arnold Mill Road in Woodstock, , Cherokee County, Georgia.
According to reports, Reardon was believed to have been distracted by her phone while she was driving on the night of the incident, which led to the deaths of Kaitlin Hunt, 28, her three-month-old daughter Riley Hunt, and her friend Kathy Deming, 61.
According to the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office, Kaitlin (who was holding Riley in her arms) and Deming were crossing Arnold Miller Road, near Main Street. They were near Woodstock City Park.
As they were crossing the poorly lit street, they were struck by Reardon’s Jeep Patriot.
Investigators say that Riley died the night of the accident, possibly even immediately.
Kaitlin Hunt and Deming were admitted to hospital with broken bones, in critical condition.
Riley’s mother (who suffered brain damage) died a few days later on September 12, 2017.
Deming died 10 days later at Kennestone Hospital.
What Are the Charges?
While Reardon was taken into custody at the time of the accident, she was later released. She was not charged at the time.
Charges have now been laid. After her arrest on Monday, she has been released on a $10,715 bond and is awaiting her next court date. Reardon has been charged with three counts of second-degree vehicular homicide, distracted driving, two counts of vehicular homicide, failure to yield, and use of electronic communication under the age of 18.
If found guilty, Reardon would serve up to three years in jail and a $3,000 fine for the misdemeanor.
In April, a bill was passed that made it illegal to be using your cell phone in any way while driving. It was not until this week that Reardon’s name was released, but there has been no public comment made from the teen or her family at this time regarding the incident.
Who Are the Hunts?
Since the accident, Kaitlin’s husband, Brandon Hunt, has been in mourning. Shortly after the death of his family, a GoFundMe page was started, in order to raise money for the widower.
The web site reads in part: “Brandon’s whole life has been forever changed and will never be the same again. He lost his only daughter/child and the love of his life since High School. It is possible, he may also go back to FL to find destruction of his home or possibly no home at all. He has a lot of healing ahead of him.”
According to the charity web site, Kaitlin (nee Vandiver) and Brandon were high school sweethearts. They were married in March of 2016. They originally lived in Port St. Lucie, Florida, but were forced to evacuate after Hurricane Irma, hence the reason they were briefly staying in Georgia.
The fundraising goal amount is $100,000; so far, $58,921 has been raised. Many in the comment section have also sent encouraging messages and their condolences.