No charges yet in weekend crash that killed 2 siblings at Michigan birthday party

BERLIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — Investigators need more time to collect information before charges can be filed in the deaths of two young siblings who were killed by a suspected drunken driver at a child’s weekend birthday party, a Michigan prosecutor said Monday.

“We expect to make a charging decision” on Tuesday, Monroe County prosecutor Jeff Yorkey said in a brief statement.

“We appreciate the public’s patience and know that you understand how important it is to have all of the information in front of us before making such an important decision,” Yorkey said.

A 66-year-old woman drove into the Swan Creek Boat Club in Berlin Township, killing 8-year-old Alanah Phillips and her 5-year-old brother, Zayn Phillips, at a birthday party attended Saturday by children and adults, about 30 miles (48 kilometers) south of Detroit, authorities said.

Their mother and another sibling were among nine people with injuries who were taken to hospitals, according to the Flat Rock school district and a crowdfunding page created to help the family.

Five people were listed in critical or serious condition Monday, the sheriff’s office said.

Authorities didn’t say whom the birthday party was honoring. A bar where the driver may have been drinking was temporarily closed but open again Sunday.

Counselors were available Monday at Flat Rock schools to help students and staff cope with what happened.

“Words cannot adequately express the depth of our sorrow, nor can they ease the pain of those who are grieving,” Superintendent Andrew Brodie said on Facebook.

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