5-Year-Old Child Dies After Crash Along I-35W in Denton

A 5-year-old child has died after a crash Christmas Eve along the southbound lanes of Interstate 35W in Denton.

Denton police said southbound traffic had slowed to a stop as Texas state troopers conducted a traffic stop on the shoulder of the interstate near mile marker 81 at about 2:47 p.m.

A family of four from Cross Roads, Texas was in a 1998 Toyota Camry stopped in the left lane when their vehicle was struck from behind by a white 2002 Toyota 4 Runner.

Of those in the Camry, two adults, identified Thursday as James and Bethany Modisette, and an 8-year-old female, identified Thursday as Isabella Modisette, were transported by ground ambulances in serious condition to Denton Regional Medical Center, while the 5-year-old female was airlifted to Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth.

The 5-year-old, identified Christmas Day as Moriah Modisette, was pronounced dead upon arrival at the hospital, police said.

The driver of the 4 Runner, identified Thursday as Garrett Wilhelem of Gainesville, was also transported by ambulance to Denton Regional ER.  Gilhelem, police said, was on his way to his family's home in Keller at the time of the crash.

Police said Wednesday Wilhelem have been on his cell phone at the time of the crash, however, the crash remains under investigation.

The southbound lanes of I-35W reopened just before 7 p.m.

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