Man accused of killing 3 family members in fiery crash admits to being high on PCP, authorities say

HOUSTON – The man accused of killing three people in a fiery crash could appear in court this week.

What’s new?

Suspect Gregory Smith is still in the hospital with a broken leg and other injuries.

Deputies said he blew through a red light at Antoine and Beltway 8 in northwest Harris County and slammed into another vehicle. Smith is charged with three counts of intoxication manslaughter, but those charges could be upgraded.

Sean Teare with the district attorney’s office said Smith admitted to smoking PCP before driving the car and getting into the crash.

What happened?

Two adults and a baby died in the crash and four people remain hospitalized, officials said Wednesday night.

Officials said a driver in a silver SUV, later identified as Smith, blew past a red light heading south on Antoine Drive at Beltway 8 hitting a black SUV and then a minivan, which burst into flames.

The driver of the black SUV was the only person in that car and remains hospitalized. She is expected to recover from her injuries.

There was a family of four in the minivan, Constable Mark Herman said in a press conference Thursday. An 11-year-old girl was ejected from the vehicle on impact and remains hospitalized. The girl’s grandmother, mother and baby brother died inside the burning van, Herman said.

Related: Authorities describe driver charged in connection with fatal crash as ‘career criminal'

Constable Herman said that in the last couple of years, Smith has been “filed on” 14 times. Seven of those charges have been dismissed. Smith was arrested a few months ago for driving while intoxicated under the influence of PCP but was out on bond. He was also accused of assaulting a police officer, Constable Herman said. These cases are pending.

“As a law enforcement officer, this is one of the most horrific accidents I’ve seen in quite some time," Constable Herman said. “What makes it even more difficult for me to comprehend is that this individual is a career criminal.”

What’s next?

Smith is expected to appear in court this Friday.

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