GALVESTON, Texas - The suspect in a deadly crash in Galveston on Friday evening was released from prison hours before after he was granted parole on a previous DWI conviction.
A small memorial lies at the scene on Avenue O and 41st Street. Galveston police were dispatched to the area around 6 p.m. for a vehicle crash involving a Jeep and a Toyota SUV.
"I mean there was no skid. It was just like boom. Nobody had a chance to stop," said Denise Garrett, who lives right in front of where it all happened.
Mason Nelson, 14, was pronounced dead, and two others remain in critical condition. There were a total of five people in the Jeep.
"My heart sunk," said Garrett upon seeing the teens involved. "The mothers, the fathers, the parents. They were just innocent children, innocent kids coming from a football something over here."
The driver of the SUV, 28-year-old Keith Brazier, was arrested, and alcohol was believed to be a contributing factor.
However, this isn't the first charge on his record. According to court records, Brazier has three previous DWI convictions in 2016, 2018, and 2021. Records show he was released from prison for the third charge hours before the crash.
"Why? Why a third time?" questioned Garrett. "It should have never happened like that. It should have never been. I don’t know what else to say other than something's got to be done with the system."
Garrett says drunk driving is particularly bad on the island, and she wants to see the justice system hand down harsher punishments, adding, "Don’t give them third and fourth chances. That’s what I think is the problem, giving people chances to go out there and do it again and this happens. And who pays for it? Some innocent child."
Brazier now sits in jail on a $500,000 bond.