‘Small victory’: Families of 4 killed in wrong-way crash still coping; suspect denied bond

YORK COUNTY, S.C. — For the first time, the families of the four victims killed in a wrong-way crash faced the person who troopers said was responsible.

One by one, the bond hearing Tuesday for the suspect in the crash filled up with people -- all connected by the deadly crash. With tears in their eyes, the families shared the anguish they’ve lived though after Rolesha Spears drove the wrong way on Interstate 77 in October. In court, Howard Davis shared that he lost his niece, Jasmine Givens, and her cousins Briasia and Nykiera Moore.

“Our family has been turned upside down,” Davis said.

Prosecutors said Spears drove the wrong way along I-77 in York County around midnight on Oct. 10, 2021 when she slammed head-on into another car with Givens behind the wheel. Spears’ 5-year-old daughter, Rylee Pate, also died in the collision. Her father said Rylee wasn’t wearing a seatbelt.

“Her actions have not only hurt me but my family as well. I never thought I’d bury my 5-year-old child,” her father said.

The exchange became tense when Spears shouted out a quick apology.

She is charged with four felony counts of driving under the influence and one count of child endangerment. The judge denied her bond, saying Spears poses a threat to the community.

Outside the courtroom, the family said it’s a small victory. They’re more focused on the legacy their loved ones left behind because they said that’s what’s getting them through.

“The love that we have, the love that we share has been so great and that’s the most important thing for us. And if we can keep that together I think Jasmine, Briasia and Nykiera would love that.”

Spears has another court appearance set for April 12.

Coroner identifies 4 killed, including 5-year-old, in I-77 wrong-way crash

The Oct. 10 crash involved two cars heading in opposite directions on I-77 in York County.

Troopers said a 2014 Chrysler 300 was driving south in the northbound lanes of I-77 near mile marker 80 when it collided head-on with a 2015 Chrysler 200.

All three passengers in the Chrysler 200 were related, and all three of them were killed in the collision, according to Highway Patrol. They were identified as 27-year-old Jasmine Givens, 20-year-old Briasia Moore and 17-year-old Nykiera Moore.

Rolesha Spears was driving the Chrysler 300 the wrong way on I-77, troopers said. Her 5-year-old daughter, later identified as Rylee Pate, was riding with her and was not wearing a seat belt. Troopers said she died at the scene.

Spears was taken to the hospital with serious injuries.

The crash is under investigation.

(WATCH BELOW: 4 people, including 5-year-old, killed in wrong-way crash on I-77 in York County, troopers say)