FHP: Car's black box could be key in Winter Park day care crash investigation

Judge issues $100,000 bond for driver in fatal crash

Local 6 News at 6:00p
Local 6 News at 6:00p

WINTER PARK, Fla. – Investigators with the Florida Highway Patrol have charged Robert Corchado in connection with a deadly crash at KinderCare in Winter Park Wednesday and are looking to the vehicle he hit for answers.

Corchado was driving a Dodge Durango when troopers say he rear-ended Albert Campbell, 61. FHP says both vehicles were northbound on North Goldenrod Road and Campbell was making a right hand turn into a driveway just beyond the day care when he was rear-ended and ended up inside a classroom of the day care.

A judge on Monday upheld a $100,000 bond for Corchado. If Corchado, 28, posts bond, the judge said he would not be allowed to drive or leave Orange and Seminole counties.

At a hearing to discuss Corchado's bond Monday morning his attorney, Daniel Tumarkin, questioned the lead investigator on the case about the black box recorder on Campbell's vehicle.

"Did you have an opportunity to download the black box?', Tumarkin asked troopers, who said they have not.

FHP spokeswoman Kim Montes says the lead investigator on the case spent Monday packaging up evidence from Campbell's car to be sent to the state lab for processing and has not gotten the black box yet.

A warrant to read the recorder is required, which is standard procedure in any traffic crash Montes said.

Attorney Steve Kramer, who handles several accident cases, says the black box could be very telling of what happened in this crash. Similar to black boxes on planes, 96 percent of new vehicles have one of these recorders.

Kramer says the devices work depending on the make of the car, but it could indicate if Campbell's car accelerated or braked as the crash was happening.

"That black box recorder could show us the trajectory, what direction they were going, what the speed was and how did this vehicle lose control and plow into the KinderCare when they were a significant distance away from the KinderCare when the accident happened," said Kramer.

Meanwhile, Maria Diaz says her daughter, June DeCalzada, 3, spent five hours in the operating room at Arnold Palmer Monday. She says she has started to feel angry about what her daughter is going through.

"It's not like she's here because she's sick from an illness, she's here because she's the victim of a crime," said Diaz.

Diaz says online comments, donations and prayers from the community uplift her spirits daily. She says while the feeling of anger has come up, the kindness of the community following the crash has restored her faith in humanity.

The funeral for Lily Quintus, 4, who was killed the crash is Tuesday. The Quintus family has asked that her funeral arrangements be kept private and that only family and close friends attend.

KinderCare administrators say repairs on the building will begin this week and they are hoping to reopen their Winter Park facility as soon as possible.