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Authorities: Wise County toddler dies after ambulance hit by drunk driver

(MGNOnline.com photo)

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. — Court documents reveal that the driver accused of crashing into an ambulance in Winston-Salem early Saturday morning was "grossly impaired," according to NBC affiliate WXII in Winston-Salem.

Authorities have charged Jose Romero, 27, with driving while intoxicated, failure to reduce speed and driving without a license, after he allegedly struck a Virginia ambulance transporting a 3-year-old boy to a Winston-Salem hospital with his mother.

The crash happened just after 1 a.m. Sunday on US-52 South between Liberty Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive.

When officers got to the scene, they found the ambulance flipped over on its side.

The highway was closed for three hours as crews worked to clear the wreck.

Winston-Salem Police Lt. Rick Newnum said investigators believe the child was in stable condition before the crash early Sunday. Newnum said it appears that the crash further injured the child and left him with critical injuries.

The toddler died from his injuries on Monday.

Three adults on the ambulance had minor injuries. The ambulance was based in Wise, Virginia.



Romero is still in jail. Court documents said he had a blood-alcohol content of .19 percent, slurred speech and glassy eyes at the time of the crash.

Romero's passenger, Andres Leon, is being charged with failing to render aid or give information in connection to the crash.

Anyone with information regarding this incident is asked to call the Winston-Salem Police Department at (336) 773-7700 or CrimeStoppers at (336) 727-2800.

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