New child sex abuse charges added to suspect from fatal Walled Lake crash

The passenger inside a fleeing suspect vehicle involved in a fatal crash killing a 13-year-old and injured her sister and mother, has been given new, unrelated criminal charges.

Gavin Kassab, 19, is charged with 10 counts of child sexual abuse material from the fall of 2022 when he allegedly sent a 16-year-old victim and her parents harassing messages and links to explicit videos of the victim. He also allegedly live-streamed explicit videos of the victim to his Instagram account.

"Taking and distributing photos or videos of underage girls and kids is exploitation, and my office will vigorously prosecute those responsible," stated Oakland County Prosecutor
Karen McDonald. "My office takes these charges extremely seriously and will fight for justice for the victim and her family."

Kassab was already facing charges in the March 22 hit-and-run crash where he was a passenger with the 16-year-old driver. The crash killed 13-year-old Piper Carrothers and seriously injured her sister and mother.

Police said that an officer tried to stop the Jeep with Kassab and the teen driver for running a red light when the driver sped off. The driver ran a light on Maple near Decker and was going 98 mph when he hit a southbound 2020 Chevy Equinox driven by 43-year-old Constance Lancenese, who was with her 10-year-old son. Both were treated and released from the hospital.

The Jeep also hit a 2010 Honda Fit driven by a 51-year-old Commerce Township woman who was with her daughters, 10-year-old Cora and 13-year-old Piper. Ten-year-old Cora was ejected from the car. Piper had to be removed from the Honda and was rushed to the hospital where she later died.

When Kassab was arraigned before on the added charges of Manslaughter and reckless driving causing death charges relating to the fatal crash, the prosecutor office’s asked the Court to increase Kassab’s bond from $250,000 to $750,000. Magistrate Andra Richardson granted the request, and Kassab is now being held at the Oakland County Jail on bonds totaling $1.5 million.

The litany of new charges against Kassab, from Commerce Township, includes 10 counts of child sexual abuse material (CSAM) (two counts of Aggravated Child Sexually Abusive Activity, three counts of aggravated child sexually abusive activity distributing or promoting, and five counts of using computers to commit a crime.

Kassab was arraigned Friday morning before Magistrate Julie Nelson-Klein on the ten CSAM charges. Bond was set at $750,000 cash or surety, no 10 percent.

Aggravated child sexually abusive activity is a felony offense punishable by up to 25 years imprisonment and/or a fine up to $125,000. Aggravated child sexually abusive activity distributing or promoting is a felony offense punishable by up to 15 years imprisonment and a fine up to $75,000. Using computers to commit a crime is a felony punishable by up to 20 years imprisonment and a fine up to $20,000.