Murder charges issued against teen in deadly police chase crash

Alex Torrez
An undated photo of Alex Torrez courtesy Facebook.

KENTWOOD, Mich. (WOOD) — A teen driver who led Michigan State Police on a chase that ended in a deadly crash in Kentwood is facing murder charges.

The Kent County Prosecutor’s Office authorized the charges against 16-year-old Alejandro “Alex” Benito Torrez Wednesday. The warrant is for two counts of second-degree murder in the March 11 crash that killed his cousin, 15-year-old David Torrez, and another driver, Calvin College student Tara Oskam.

Undated courtesy photo of Tara Oskam

Michigan State Police say a trooper tried to pull over Alex Torrez for speeding on US-131 when he drove off. MSP said the chase spanned five miles and lasted for about six minutes before the car Torrez was driving hit Oskam’s vehicle at 52nd Street and Broadmoor Avenue.

Oskam was on the phone with her roommate while heading home from a church euchre tournament when the fiery crash happened, according to her boyfriend.

David Torrez
An undated photo of David Torrez courtesy Facebook.

Both Oskam and David Torrez died at the scene. First responders pulled Alex Torrez from the wreckage before the flames could reach him. He was taken to a hospital and transferred to the Kent County jail Monday to await charges.

State records show Alex Torrez did not have a valid driver’s license. In the approximate year he was eligible for a license, he was caught three times with an invalid or improper license, according to records.

Alex Torrez is being charged as an adult. Kent County Prosecutor Chris Becker says he will likely be arraigned in the case Thursday.