Springfield 13-year-old killed in Chicopee car crash

Da'Vant Byrd was a Holyoke Middle School student.

A 13-year-old died in a car crash in Chicopee early Saturday morning, the Hampden County District Attorney’s Office said in a news release Saturday.

On Monday, MassLive reported that the 13-year-old’s aunt identified him as Holyoke Middle School student Da’Vant Byrd, of Springfield.

The DA’s office said the crash happened a little before 3 a.m. Saturday morning when a car with four teens inside, including Da’Vant, sped away from police and crashed into the side of a house.

Kiesha Baulkman, Da’Vant’s aunt, told the news site that her nephew was sweet and full of energy. She said he loved to dance, sing, and go to church.


“His smile would light up a room,” Da’Vant’s aunt told MassLive. “Words can’t even explain how deeply he will be missed.”

At 2:43 a.m. Saturday morning, shortly before the crash, a Chicopee police officer spotted the car speeding on Broadway Street, the DA’s office said. The officer saw the car turn onto Montgomery Street and tried to initiate a traffic stop, but the car sped away.

The officer followed the car and soon found that it had crashed into the side of a house, the DA’s office said. Both the house and the car caught fire soon after.

A 19-year-old, an 18-year-old, and a 17-year-old were in the car along with Da’Vant. First responders were able to extricate the older teens from the car and take them to a hospital to be treated for minor injuries. Da’Vant was pronounced dead at the scene.

One person who lived in the home was in the room hit by the car and was injured, the DA’s office said. They were taken to a hospital for treatment. All of the home’s other residents were unharmed and were able to leave the house before it went up in flames.


State Police are still investigating the crash, and no charges have been announced.

Da’Vant’s mother, Linka Baulkman, set up a GoFundMe to help pay for Da’Vant’s funeral expenses.


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