PICTURED: Five teenage ballet dancers left badly injured after hit-and-run Mercedes driver blew through red light and smashed into their car
- The dancers were on their way to dinner in Seal Beach when they were hit
- The driver smashed into their vehicle then crashed into a bus stop and fled
- Rhyann Diaz, suffered a broken pelvis, punctured lung and broken ribs
Five teenage ballet dancers have been left severely injured after a hit-and-run driver in a Mercedes blew through a red light, smashing into the vehicle they were all traveling in.
Saori Maeda, Rhyann Diaz, Camille Williamson, Liv Wreck and Katrina Vija had just finished ballet class and were driving to dinner on Saturday in Seal Beach, California, when their car was hit.
Four of the girls were knocked unconscious on impact. All five were taken to the hospital, where Rhyann and Camille remain.
Rhyann, who was sitting behind the driver’s seat, suffered the worst injuries; all of her ribs are broken and she has a punctured lung and shattered pelvis.
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Saori Maeda, Rhyann Diaz, Camille Williamson, Liv Wreck and Katrina Vija had just finished ballet class and were driving to dinner on Saturday when their car was hit
The Mercedes is shown plowing into the girls’ sedan, sending it spinning in the middle of the road
Surveillance footage shows the moment the Mercedes tore through a red light and smashed the girls’ sedan head on.
It sent the vehicle spinning, and knocked four of the five girls’ unconscious upon impact.
All five were taken to the hospital. Three have since been released, but Rhyann and Camille Williamson remain in the hospital.
Now, the girls are appealing for the public’s help to identify the driver.
After smashing into their car, he plowed into a bus stop. The young man then fled on foot and remains at-large.
Police described him as a Hispanic male, aged between 18 and 20.
The girls’ ballet school is now fundraising to help pay their medical bills.
The girls’ car was smashed into pieces. Four were knocked unconscious on impact
L-R: Rhyann Diaz, who remains in the hospital with a shattered pelvis, broken ribs and a punctured lung, Saori Maeda, Katrina Vija, Camille Williamson and Liv Wreck
Dancer Camille Wiliamson (left) who remains in the hospital along with Rhyann Diaz (right)
The girls’ dance studio is now fundraising to help them pay their medical bills
A GoFundMe page set up for them has raised $30,000.
Most will be able to dance again, though it’s unclear when.
‘I believe she took the full impact. I was shocked. I couldn’t believe anybody was going that fast, didn’t have any intention of slowing down,’ Rhyann’s mother Rosanna told KTLA.
‘I do want to get back to the studio as soon as possible, but I do need to make sure that I’m taking care of myself,’ Rhyann said.
Studio-owners David & Renee Kim said in the GoFundMe page that the girls all sustained ‘serious injuries’.
‘It is with heavy hearts that we share that five of our beloved company dancers were involved in a severe car accident this past Saturday evening.
‘While the dancers have sustained a multitude of serious injuries, we are able to share good news that all five have survived and will journey on their road to recovery.
‘As we have coached these wonderful young ladies in their ballet training for many years and currently teach them on a daily basis, all five are more than just students to us and are truly like family.
‘While this terrible accident has left us devastated and heartbroken, we know our girls are strong, resilient individuals who will overcome this tragedy,’ they said.
Anyone with information about the driver of the Mercedes is asked to contact the Seal Beach Police Department on (562) 594-7232.