Teen driver in North Potomac car crash released from hospital

WASHINGTON — A teenager who was critically injured during a crash in North Potomac is out of the hospital and recovering at home.

Michael McAuliffe, the attorney for Samuel Ellis, says the 18-year-old and his family “are in agony” over the deaths of Calvin Li and Alexander Murk. Both Li and Murk were 18 years old.

All three were recent graduates of Thomas S. Wooton High School in Rockville. A fourth teen, who is 17 years old, was also injured in the crash. That passenger has not been identified because of his age, McAuliffe says. Ellis, who was behind the wheel of the car, has not been charged in connection with the crash. Montgomery County police officers are investigating the accident.

Typically, these investigations take weeks, sometimes months. So far, according to police, the investigation shows the teenagers were coming from a party where underage drinking took place.

In March, Ellis was cited for possession of alcohol, and the charges were to be dropped pending his completion of an alcohol education program. The Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s office says Ellis was enrolled in the program, but he had not completed it at the time of the fatal June 25 wreck.

Montgomery County police told reporters that beer containers, “still cool to the touch,” were found in the vehicle driven by Ellis the night of the crash in North Potomac.

Elllis was facing a court appearance in Ocean City based on a June 2 incident. That also involved Calvin Li.

The formal charge in court records is “affray,” which refers to a fight or disagreement that disturbs the public. It’s similar to a disorderly conduct charge.

On July 9, Ellis is to be in an Ocean City court on that charge. McAuliffe says he’s filed a motion to postpone that appearance based on Ellis’ physical condition.

“He’s in no condition to travel,” McAuliffe says.

WTOP’s Kate Ryan contributed to this report.

Federal News Network Logo
Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up