Last Saturday morning 16-year-old Tristan Martin was driving his father’s truck-tractor when he killed two North Texan women who had pulled over to the shoulder to change a tire along a highway in Limon, Colorado. Shun Jones of Carrollton and her niece Amanda Omo-Iyamu of Balch Springs were on their way to see family in Colorado when they were hit by Martin’s truck. The family has suffered a great loss and is upset that an unqualified teen was driving the truck. Amanda Omo-Iyamu’s husband Emmanuel spoke with WFAA reporters saying, “I would have preferred somebody that was capable of handling a truck like that was the one behind the wheel.”
The Martin family has been quick to defend Tristan despite his actions during and after the accident. Tristan’s father Michel Martin even lied to the police in order to keep his son out of trouble. After the accident Michel Martin who had been in the truck’s cab quickly took the driver’s spot. Tristan’s friends, who had been following behind the tractor, picked Tristan up and sped him away from the scene of the accident where the two women lay dead. It was not until later that Michel Martin told police that he had in fact not been driving at the time of the accident.
While the family no longer denies Tristan was driving they still insist that he did not need a commercial license which he would have to have been 18 to qualify for. The family told Colorado’s finest that they consider the truck-tractor a personal farm vehicle. His aunt, Lydia Martin, spoke up for him when speaking to the press and added, “It [only] had one axle… he had lots of experience driving the truck here on the ranch.”
It makes you wonder, if the family was so sure that Tristan hadn’t done anything wrong, then why have him flee the site of the accident and have his father lie to the police? The Colorado cops were not so easily fooled. Tristan Martin will face two felony charges of failing to remain at the scene of an accident, and two misdemeanor counts of careless driving resulting in death. Father Michel Martin faces a count of false reporting.
While the Martins and Colorado police are busy with the legal aftermath of the crash, the Texan family is engulfed by their losses. Thirty-eight-year old Amanda Omo-Iyamu was devoted to her family and community. She leaves behind three children and a devoted husband who she last spoke with on Friday night. “She called me, and I say, ‘Just be careful. Call me when you get there,’ but I guess I’m not going to get a call. I miss my wife. I love my wife.” The Omo-Iyamu and Jones family face a great loss and a very difficult time ahead.