A 24-year-old driver died after a crash near the intersection of NE 150th Street and NE 6th Avenue in northeast Miami-Dade on Saturday, Miami-Dade Police said.
Jesse Petithomme lost his life Saturday afternoon after his ATV crashed into a Dodge Caravan.
Investigators said Petithomme was speeding north on his ATV when he crashed into the blue Dodge. Benjamin Brooks, 71, was at the wheel of the minivan and likely heading into the Walgreens parking lot there.
By Saturday night, the entrance to the parking lot was decorated with flowers, teddy bears and candles. A single red rose found a makeshift vase in a storm drain.
"He made you laugh all day, no matter what the circumstances were. He'd always say, 'Don't worry about it, everything's going to be alright,'" said Charlene Vigne, Petithomme's girlfriend.
Vigne no longer has Petithomme by her side to comfort her through this pain. She placed a bouquet on the ground and said a silent prayer. Earlier, screams were heard coming from loved ones as a sheet was placed over the man's lifeless body.
"Somebody came to him and say 'Are you OK?,'" said a witness who would only identify himself as DJ One Way. "And he just put his head up and then put his head down again. And he died right there on the spot," the man said.
According to witnesses, the ATV hit the minivan's passenger door. It then jumped over the minivan, landing on the other side of the vehicle. The ATV's seat became lodged in one of the minivan's windows.
"I ask why, but I go to church so I know I can't ask God why. Things happen for a reason, but at the same time, I wonder, why him?" Vigne said.
Miami-Dade Police were not expected to cite the minivan's driver.