MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – Minneapolis police say charges have been filed following a crash Thursday night on the city’s north side that killed a woman who was eight months pregnant as well as her unborn child.
Police are calling the deadly wrong-way crash in Minneapolis “catastrophic.”
Just before 11 p.m. Thursday, an SUV was going the wrong way on Newton Avenue when it crashed into a minivan. The minivan’s passenger was a pregnant woman, identified by her family as 39-year-old Ubah Hussen. Both she and her unborn baby died.
Mark Franklin Jr., a 36-year-old man from Minneapolis, has been charged with one count of criminal vehicular homicide and three counts of criminal vehicular operation. The complaint states a controlled substance was present in his body at the time of the crash. He admitted to using PCP and did not remember striking any vehicles, claiming to have woken up after the collision.
Hussen’s oldest son, 18-year-old Omar Ahmed, is shocked by the loss — not just of his mom, but also his soon-to-be youngest sibling.
“I don’t believe my mom is gone,” he said.
Hussen leaves behind 10 kids.
“There’s 10 of us. The other one who passed away with my mom that would have been the 11th. Now we’re 10,” he said.
Ahmed said his dad was driving his mom home from work when the crash happened. He described his mom as a hard worker and always wanting to provide for the family.
“She always wanted to work, like if she was pregnant — anything — or if she was sick, she always wanted to go work,” Ahmed said. “She always paid the bills, everything.”
Jessica Enwesi was watching TV when she heard the crash outside her North Minneapolis home.
“It sounded like an explosion, I thought, and especially since the power lines were down so you couldn’t see,” Jessica Enwesi said.
Police believe the driver of an SUV had been using drugs and was speeding as he drove the wrong way on Newton Avenue. Paint markings on the street showed the path he took. He hit a number of parked vehicles before colliding with the minivan.
“It was so scary because when it hit that car you could hear it coming. And my sister and I just dropped to the floor because we were so freaked out,” Enwesi said.
DRAMATIC VIDEO: Security video captured a fatal crash in N. Minneapolis last night. One witness thought it was a bomb explosion due to how loud it was. The crash killed a pregnant woman and her unborn child. Two are in custody. | https://t.co/JON4e8deXn pic.twitter.com/zhs4il4KCJ
— WCCO – CBS Minnesota (@WCCO) October 18, 2019
After the minivan was hit by the SUV, it rolled over and knocked down a light pole. The driver of the van was able to get out, but the 39-year-old was trapped inside.
“There was so much damage. In fact, you could tell there was someone else in there, everyone knew there was more than one person in there, but that’s as much as you could make out,” Enwesi said.
Police and firefighters worked non-stop for nearly an hour to try and get Hussen out, as two Hennepin Healthcare doctors provided aid while she was trapped inside. Despite their efforts, she and her unborn baby died before they could free her.
“My stomach is turning. I just feel bad. They tried for a long time to extricate her and couldn’t,” Alicia Wendlandt said.
Chaplains were on scene to help neighbors and first responders cope with the loss. The suspect was taken to a local hospital and then taken into custody. Even in the light of day, the reality of what happened is still sinking in.
“I can’t even imagine because of the car being flipped over. I literally can’t even imagine that,” Enwesi said.
Hussen’s husband and the two people inside the suspect’s SUV went to the hospital but will survive.
The aftermath of a deadly crash in North Minneapolis. The driver was going the wrong way and may have been under the influence of drugs and alcohol. A woman and her unborn child were killed. Three others were injured. @WCCO pic.twitter.com/eHMw54QIdn
— John Lauritsen (@JDLauritsen) October 18, 2019
As the oldest son, Ahmed is now faced with the responsibility to help his dad raise his nine younger siblings.
“It’s just me and my dad now,” he said. “Just pray for us. Just pray.”
The family is working to put together a GoFundMe account to help the children and now-single father.