A driver charged with vehicular homicide pleaded not guilty Tuesday and was held on $250,000 bail in a crash that killed his 9-year-old nephew.
Investigators said 26-year-old Jayce Randall, of Gig Harbor, admitted to drinking and smoking marijuana when he lost control of his vehicle and crashed Saturday in Purdy.
"Drugs, drinking, and driving lead to senseless tragedies like this," said Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist. "Our prayers go out to the victim's surviving 8-year-old sister and her family."
Randall and his 9-year-old nephew, Donovan Best, were thrown from the vehicle.
Troopers said neither one was wearing a seat belt.
Donovan was taken to Mary Bridge Hospital in critical condition, and died after being taken off life support.
Randall was taken to Tacoma General Hospital in satisfactory condition. He was released Monday and booked into the Pierce County Jail.
Randall’s 8-year-old niece was in the back seat during the crash, but she was not injured.