UPDATE: Man Indicted in Motor Vehicle Crash That Killed 3 Children on Indian Head Highway in December

January 25, 2019

UPDATE 1/25/2019: Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Aisha Braveboy announced that Thomas Hawks was indicted in connection with the Dec. 30 crash that killed 5-year-old Alexander Mejia, 5-year- old Rosalie Mejia, and 1-year- old Isaac Mejia, all of Falls Church, Virginia.

According to officials, Hawks’ blood alcohol content was nearly twice the legal limit

Hawks was indicted on three counts of vehicular manslaughter and two counts of causing serious injury by motor vehicle while under the influence, according to officials. Hawks is expected to surrender with his attorney, officials stated.

If convicted on all counts, Hawks faces up to 36 years in prison.

Prosecutors refrained from formally charging Hawks earlier in part because of a 1990 court decision. The Maryland Court of Appeals ruled that a man charged with a lesser crime in a traffic stop could not be charged again with a more serious crime because it amounted to double jeopardy.

UPDATE 12/31/2018: The Prince George’s County Police Department Collision Analysis Reconstruction Unit (CARU) is investigating a rear-end collision involving multiple vehicles which resulted in the fatalities of three young siblings Sunday evening.

At 9:40 pm, the preliminary investigation reveals, an adult male driving alone in a pick-up truck rear-ended a vehicle carrying two adults and three children on Indian Head Highway near Wilson Bridge Drive. That impact caused the victims’ vehicle to strike the car in front of it which struck another vehicle in front of it, as well.

While it is early in our investigation, we know the crash occurred just before an intersection where the family was either slowed or stopped behind two other vehicles for the traffic light. The driver of the pick-up is suspected of driving under the influence and, it appears, was moving at a much higher rate of speed than the victims’ cars. Preliminarily, there is no evidence of skid marks on the scene prior to the point of impact with the car carrying the family. The pick-up truck came to rest on top of the rear-passenger compartment of that sedan.

5-year-old Alexander Mejia, 5-year- old Rosalie Mejia, and 1-year- old Isaac Mejia, all of Falls Church, Virginia, were killed upon impact. The two adult victims, the children’s parents, were transported to the hospital in critical but stable condition. The driver of the truck was taken into custody at the scene for sobriety testing.

Chief Hank Stawinski said, “I am heartbroken over the loss of these three young innocent lives. The actions of a suspected drunk driver has ended in a lifetime of pain for this family. We work tirelessly to clear our roads of drivers who make the horrible decision to pick up their keys and drive while impaired. We have been conducting targeted DUI and speed enforcement across the county and stepped up our efforts in specific areas to include the 210 corridor as we neared the New Year’s Eve holiday. At the Washington Regional Alcohol Program (WRAP) awards program two weeks ago, I commended all of our local law enforcement for arresting more than 13,000 drunk drivers on our region’s roads annually. We are not only aware of this issue, we are actively engaged in this fight to take drunk drivers off the road and to hold them responsible. So it is difficult to describe how deeply frustrated I am, because, despite all of this work, a family is suffering beyond imagination. All of this because of one individual’s decision that placed the lives of all those around him in jeopardy when he got behind that wheel. It was a decision that ended in tragedy and it was a tragedy that didn’t need to be.”

As for the two other cars that were in front of the family’s car and were also hit, one of those drivers was transported to the hospital with minor injuries.

The driver of the pick-up truck has been released. Final charges in this case are pending the outcomes of the investigation, toxicology testing, and reconstruction analysis and will be determined in consultation with the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office.

Anyone who witnessed the collision or who may have additional information is asked to call our CARU investigators at 301-731-4422. Callers wishing to remain anonymous may call Crime Solvers at 1-866-411-TIPS, text “PGPD plus your message” to CRIMES (274637) on your cell phone or go to www.pgcrimesolvers.com.

12/30/18: On Sunday, December 30, 2018, at approximately 9:45 p.m., emergency personnel responded to a motor vehicle accident with entrapment on Route 210 (Indian Head Highway) at Wilson Bridge Drive in Oxon Hill.

The crash involved three vehicles, with 2 adults and 1 pediatric trapped in one of the vehicles.

Fire officials say three children died in the crash.

At least two adults were safely extracted and tended to by medics.

More than 60 people have died in crashes on Indian Head Highway in the last 11 years, according to the Maryland State Highway Administration.

AAA calls Indian Head Highway one of the most dangerous roads in the D.C. area.

45 Responses to UPDATE: Man Indicted in Motor Vehicle Crash That Killed 3 Children on Indian Head Highway in December

  1. Anonymous on December 31, 2018 at 2:18 am


  2. MikeinMorganza on December 31, 2018 at 5:12 am

    Lord have mercy…

  3. Wiggy on December 31, 2018 at 5:26 am

    Nice long stretch of road and people treat it like MIR. No different than 234. No need for that on a Sunday night.

  4. Patty on December 31, 2018 at 6:25 am

    So sad. So very, very sad. Lord have mercy.

  5. Barbara Warren on December 31, 2018 at 8:12 am

    Rest in paradise Babies

  6. Anonymous on December 31, 2018 at 9:14 am

    I work doing construction on 210 and that intersection is bad. They need to stop the u-turns there. The u turns are not controlled by the light and people fly down that road. I’ve been saying all summer someone’s gonna get killed there. Just glad I wasn’t there to see it. Prayers for all involved.

    • Tina on December 31, 2018 at 3:32 pm

      They need to enforce the speed there day n night. Agreed! I kept saying this all summer long. So sad it took lives for them to maybe now do something. :(

      • Adam 12 on January 2, 2019 at 5:35 am

        Who is “they?” The police do their jobs and the courts don’t. I suggest going to traffic court on any given day and watch that circus. It is a total waste of taxpayer money as judges could care less about what the law says and how bad drivers really are. It really is pathetic and has become nothing more than a revenue generator.

      • Dank on January 5, 2019 at 11:28 am

        How about people be responsible and obey the speed limit that is posted.. starts there.. shouldn’t only obey the law when you see a law enforcement personal.

  7. Steve on December 31, 2018 at 9:27 am

    They have been working on 210 for at least 5 years. It is the slowest highway construction project I have ever seen. The associated contracts should be investigated. Many of the accidents can be attributed to the condition of the highway and ingress/egress problems. It is not all driver error. The highway department and county leadership deserve some of the blame for dragging on the reconstruction project. A well engineered road is a safer road.

    • Melissa on December 31, 2018 at 10:21 am

      Steve- I could not agree with you more! I have been driving 210 for the last 20 years and it’s just getting worse by the year because of all the construction. Be safe out there, and I thank you for your hard work :)

    • Buold it faster and people wont drive drunk? on December 31, 2018 at 3:14 pm

      Point taken, BUT, do you want a well engineered highway that was put together the right way, or do you want the construction crews to haphazardly get it together as quickly as possible? None of the construction has caused a driver to get behind the wheel of an automobile after drinking…

      • Anonymous on January 1, 2019 at 9:39 am

        Or to speed

  8. DhMom on December 31, 2018 at 10:05 am

    God rest their souls. Could have been my family EASILY. I’m disgusted by the lack of oversight and careless driving in our neighborhood!!!!! Such a lack of basic civility.

  9. RIck on December 31, 2018 at 11:30 am

    I agree with Steve’s comment. Prayers to the family.

  10. Shirley on December 31, 2018 at 2:52 pm

    The pickup driver was Released? He killed three Babies! He has no right to be out!

    • Wiggy on December 31, 2018 at 3:25 pm

      Do you people around here understand the judicial system?

      “Final charges in this case are pending the outcomes of the investigation, toxicology testing, and reconstruction analysis and will be determined in consultation with the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office.”

      • exrep on December 31, 2018 at 11:10 pm

        bullsh#t wiggy 3 kids are DEAD you moron

        • Wiggy on January 2, 2019 at 4:57 am

          Oh I’m the moron? Wow big guy with big words. Perhaps if they had a confession or a smoking run with his fingerprints on it then he would’ve stayed locked up afer he was CHARGED! The state doesn’t have enough evidence to charge him him MORON! Once they do, he’ll sit in jail like all you keystone cops want (unless he’s released on bail). Go watch the paint dry and lick some windows.

        • Wiggy is correct on January 2, 2019 at 7:20 am

          You, my friend, are the moron. I was wondering why the driver was released as well, and the explaination that I read (to summarize) is essentially: Once the charges are filed, they cant be changed, and somehow falls under the double jeopardy rules. So they want to do the investigation, dot the I’s, cross the T’s, etc.

          Think of it this way, would you like the authoprities to rush charges now, and risk him getting off completely on a technicality? Would that make it better? Of course not. Let them do their jobs. I would much rather tham do it right the first time, even if it takes a few weeks, rather than him never get punished for his actions because they were in a rush.

    • Dave on December 31, 2018 at 3:28 pm

      Agreed but unfortunately if they charge him now they won’t be able to charge him with everything they want. They can’t hold him most likely because there is no charges yet. Once they get all their ducks in a row they will hit him with all the charges they can.

    • Tom on December 31, 2018 at 4:09 pm

      I agree

  11. exrep on December 31, 2018 at 2:54 pm

    why the hell was that drunk driver not named sorry but he deserves shame of hell foe what he did, so are the parents supposed to start having replacement kids, name that driver

    • Jess on December 31, 2018 at 3:29 pm

      I agree!!! Why the hell was the drunk drivers name not released as well??!!!
      Id like to know who the man is. He deserves everything that is about to happen to his life….which he shldnt still have! Although, some wld say…he has to live with what he has done…. im all for “eye for an eye”! His choices have ended 3 innocent lives and devastated the family. Lord be with the family and god rest those 3 tiny souls.

      • Karrod on January 5, 2019 at 5:11 pm

        I believe he is related to an official and they are withholding that information. I am with you on wanting to kno the who’s and what’s!

  12. Anonymous on December 31, 2018 at 4:26 pm

    Sorry ass drunk driver

    • Anonymous on January 1, 2019 at 11:01 am

      Southern Maryland person in a pick up. In not surprised this happen. Everyday I got a damn pick up truck right on my bumper with there bright ass headlights. St Mary’s county especially.

      • Wiggy on January 2, 2019 at 4:58 am

        Get off your phone, stop doing 50 in a 55 and that won’t happen anymore.

  13. Jay on January 1, 2019 at 7:42 am

    Lord when I saw this family’s pic, and I read the comments I was glad there was no stupid political comments.Everybody was an agreement. All prayers go out to this family!

    • Anonymous on January 2, 2019 at 10:42 am

      Why did you think about it and say it hasn’t happend. Are you wanting this to happen.

    • Anonymous on January 3, 2019 at 9:01 am

      There were no stupid political comments until your post appeared!

  14. Ken on January 1, 2019 at 10:13 am

    He must have been under the influence of a CDS if he was drunk he would have been charged with dui because a breathalyzer at the station can determine your blood alcohol level
    He may not have been intoxicated “pending blood test” that’s why his name hasn’t been released. This could be a case of distracted driving ie: cell phone just as deadly
    God bless the families of all involved

  15. Mary J Young on January 1, 2019 at 11:45 am

    This don’t make no damn since how ppl “think” they can drink and drive and put other ppl lives in danger…

    • Shawn on January 2, 2019 at 5:26 am

      And stop using useless hash tags- learn some English.

      • Wiggy on January 25, 2019 at 5:01 pm

        It’s not a hash tag. It’s the pound sign.

  16. Anonymous on January 1, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    Wow I have no words this is really sad .why do people careless about other people’s lifes …why is he even out free when this family lost there 3 children

  17. Daniela Vaca on January 1, 2019 at 7:38 pm

    His free out there and this family lost there 3 kid’s .how very sad

  18. Adam 12 on January 2, 2019 at 5:48 am

    Quick civics lesson. Though what this driver did is horrific, there is a thing called due process. We live in a society of laws that grant certain rights. The police are correct in not rushing to charge based on emotions. They want to get all of their ducks in a row to ensure this turd gets put away where he belongs. There is a ton of investigative work to do. Interview witnesses, looking for video evidence, talking to the bartender, etc. Let the police do there thing and be patient, this turd’s time will come. During the Casey Anthony saga, the police rushed to charge and now that skank is walking free laughing at the police. Be patient.

  19. Mn on January 2, 2019 at 12:12 pm

    Makes me cry to see those lil baby die like that…her mom is still unconscious and I can’t imagine when she wakes up and and find out her babies are dead .. really sad! and why there is no information about the suspect ( killer)?

  20. Anonymous on January 3, 2019 at 10:44 pm

    Killer, of those beautiful angels

  21. S NIXON on January 4, 2019 at 7:51 am

    why isn’t the media why isn’t the media ? Must be for his personal safety. Oh maybe it’s somebody impotent and they is protecting him.

    his name has not been released because he has not been formally charged yet.

    In serious motor vehicle accidents most police won’t charge a suspect until an exhaustive investigation is completed. Often that includes a full accident reconstruction and laboratory blood and toxicology tests.

    Investigators want to have all details of the case meticulously documented before filing charges because the legal principal of double-jeopardy does not allow them a second chance to get it right if mistakes are made.

  22. The Hawk on January 25, 2019 at 12:40 pm

    “Tommy Hawks” is a 27 year old SCUM BAG. He drinks and drives every day. But you see, he’s got family in high places. He ain’t getting more than 5 years. His scum bag, lying, enabling family is going to make sure he is out and killing children ASAP. That’s SOMD politics. Anyone else rubs a curb around here, their picture, address, DOB will be posted within hours on SMNews or the BN.com . But if you have rich family members involved in the court system, best believe there are NO CONSEQUENCES for your actions and you can hurt other people as much as you like.. his family is running around trying to sue anyone who breathes his name. Remember this comment when he gets sentenced to his 60 days in jail. Run the Hawks out of town… corrupt rats

  23. Anonymous on January 25, 2019 at 1:11 pm

    They need to give him the whole 36 years and he would deserve every day of that sentence and more. If the state truly wants to decrease the DWI accidents and deaths they need to start giving these turds the maximum. This was not a mistake, this was a selfish act that cost three kids their lives and he needs to pay dearly for his choices.

  24. Anonymous on January 25, 2019 at 1:56 pm

    He was supposed to turn himself into authorities today. Well FYI his ass is RUNNING!!! His mommy and daddy are getting him outta here!!!!

  25. Kb on January 27, 2019 at 6:18 am

    Dam tommy you really messed up now. Tommy has always been a good person not a scrum bag but man what a terrible act you have committed. I feel for everyone involved especially the parents of those 3children taken to young. Also feel for Tommy’s parents who are two of the nicest people out there. But tommy you deserve a harsh sentence for destroying that beautiful young family. I Pray for everyone who have been impacted by this tragedy.