Kayla Mendoza, the 20-year-old Florida woman who posted a Twitter message declaring herself “2 drunk 2 care” just hours before causing a crash that killed two other young women, may soon be “2 broke 2 care,” as the families of her two victims have filed a lawsuit against her, charging Mendoza with wrongfully causing the deaths of their daughters.
News of the lawsuit comes as a Florida Highway Patrol affidavit appears to confirm that Mendoza was drinking before getting in her car in the early morning hours of Nov. 17.
The affidavit, filed by the FHP in order to get a search warrant, and obtained by the Sun-Sentinel newspaper, also contains frightening details of Mendoza’s deadly drive that night.
Behind the wheel of a 2004 Hyundai Sonata owned by her boyfriend, Federico Javier Reyes Santiago, Mendoza sped up to 80 mph on the Sawgrass Expressway near Coral Springs. But she was going the wrong way.
As she sped east in the westbound lane, several cars swerved out of her way, slammed on their brakes or flashed their headlights in warning. But rather than find a safe way to pull off the road, Mendoza kept going, colliding head-on with a 2012 Toyota Camry driven by Kaitlyn Nicole Ferrante and carrying Ferrante’s best friend, Marisa Catronio, in the passenger’s seat.
Both women were 21 years old and both died. Mendoza was hospitalized.
The affidavit also says that Mendoza was seen earlier that night consuming alcohol with a group of co-workers at Tijuana Taxi Co., a popular Mexican restaurant in Coral Springs.
"If that's the case, she was 20 years old, how was she served, how did she drink?" asked Gary Catronio, grieving father of one of the crash victims. "This is not pleasing news."
But one of the restaurant's owners, who promises she will cooperate fully with the police investigation, says that if Mendoza was there that night, no one remembers seeing her.
“There is no confirmation, and nothing in our records, that says [Mendoza] was here,” Jessica Brooke told the Sun-Sentinel. “Nobody remembers seeing or serving her on the premises."
The search warrant was intended to let police test samples of Mendoza's blood drawn at a hospital where she was taken after the crash.
Santiago is also named as a defendant in the families' lawsuit. Mendoza was driving his car even though she allegedly had no drivers license.