Father to stand trial for 7-year-old daughter's death in I-94 crash

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Wilburt Thomas is charged with second degree murder, manslaughter and child abuse in the death of his own daughter - Desandra Thomas, 7.

Prosecutors say he drove drunk and crashed a van on the side of I-94. His daughter contacted 911 and went to get help. That was when she was hit and killed by another driver.

"Mr. Thomas did not want to kill his daughter on this day," said Christopher Petrick, Wayne County assistant prosecutor. 

But prosecutors say the choices he made during the early morning hours of July 15th led directly to his daughter's death. It's alleged he took a van 
from work without permission, got drunk and high - then drove with his little girl in the van and crashed.

"He told witnesses at the scene she got out of the vehicle to go get help so he knew she got out of the vehicle," Petrick said.

The child is seen on nearby surveillance video walking from the crash scene in her pink pajamas. Prosecutors say she was trying to get help for her father when she was hit and killed by another driver. An officer discovered her body.

"She was a couple feet off the road, the grass was grown and I didn't see her until I got right up on her, within a few feet," said Corporal Corey Sadler, Romulus police. "She was lying face down, pink pajamas with no shoes on."

Thomas's attorney disagreed with the decision to charge her client with second degree murder but the judge decided to move forward with all of the charges.