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Second arrest made in connection to White Settlement crash that killed teen girl, injured her father

White Settlement police said 69-year-old Peggy Cox is facing charges of intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault.

WHITE SETTLEMENT, Texas — A second person has been arrested in connection to an August crash that killed an incoming high school senior and seriously injured her father, officials announced Thursday. 

White Settlement police said 69-year-old Peggy Cox is facing charges of intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault after a pickup truck crashed into a home, killing Katey Kirkland and injuring her father, Boswell High School teacher Kevin Kirkland, in early August.

Police said an arrest warrant was issued for Cox Thursday, Sept. 8. She was arrested around 4 p.m. the same day.

Police said the crash occurred on Aug. 7 at a home on Jason Court, a neighborhood near West Loop 820 and Interstate 30.

Police said the driver, identified as 63-year-old Donald Gruber, lost control of the pickup, entered a backyard and then crashed through multiple bedrooms of the victims’ home.

WFAA spoke with a neighbor, David Sosa, who said he arrived moments after the crash and ran inside to try to help the family, locating Kevin Kirkland.

“I was just holding him and, since he had a whole bunch of blood, he kept slipping through my hands until the cops showed up and helped me get him out of there," Sosa said. "At the time, we didn’t know someone was trapped under the truck.”

Katey Kirkland was pronounced dead at the scene and Kevin Kirkland was rushed to a local hospital.

RELATED: White Settlement crash: Deceased teen, injured father identified as Eagle Mountain-Saginaw ISD student, teacher

Gruber was arrested and charged with intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault. Police said he had multiple DWI convictions prior to the fatal crash.

Police said Cox was the passenger inside the vehicle, and that she admitted she too had been drinking – but she wasn’t arrested initially.

Following more evidence and a follow-up investigation, detectives said Cox contributed to the crash by grabbing the steering wheel before the pickup struck the home.  

Police said forensic toxicology results showed Cox was also impaired and was over the legal limit in Texas.

“This was incredible work by Detective Page to seek justice for the victim and their family,” White Settlement Chief of Police Christopher Cook said in a statement released Thursday. “We continue to lift this family up in prayer as they continue the long, healing process and recovery from serious injuries. The investigation revealed that the passenger also operated the motor vehicle during this horrific incident and during the crash.”


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