Haille Collett Charged for Causing Serious Injury to Sister
Fox 47 News
On the morning of January 24th 16 year-old Haille Collett's car slid into a school bus on icy Nixon road in Grand Ledge. Both were hurt but her 13-year old sister Brielle was much worse.
Thursday Haille learned she will be charged in the accident. It's the latest blow for the family who had been celebrating slight improvements in Brielle's condition.
Brielle, who has extensive brain damage has been able to start communicating to her family through a thumbs up/ thumbs down system. They are currently working on speech therapy.
Alyssa Fenske talked with the prosecutor and the family Friday about the charge against Haille.
The official charge is a "Moving Violation Causing Serious Injury."
Joli Collett, mother of Brielle and Haille says the charge came as a shock.
"When it rains it pours. First it was the accident, then all the surgeries we went through, and now this."
Joli says Hallie has been helping to care for her sister. She often goes to Brielle's Grand Rapids rehab facility to be with her.
"She (Hallie) has memories of the accident and that's why the notification of these charges came as such a blow," said Joli.
Family or not, with the extent of the injuries Eaton County Prosecutor Jeff Sauter says he's decided Haille should be charged in juvenile court.
"We're not looking for any particular outcome. If the facts warrant we believe we should hold people accountable for their behavior."
Haille did not get a ticket in the crash according to her attorney James White. She faces a maximum of two years in a juvenile facility, but neither Sauter or White sees that happening.
"A juvenile court's focus is on rehabilitation. It's not a punishment orientated process," said Sauter.
"Hallie is also a victim here," said White.
For Jolie it's a nightmare that can't end soon enough.
"This is devastating for my two girls to have to go through this. These are two girls that are very close and love each other."
Sauter tells us the judge in juvenile court has the power not to accept the case and if that happens that would be the end of it.
The preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 10th.