Wrongful death lawsuits filed in fatal wrong-way crash

FHP: Marisa Catronio, Kaitlyn Ferrante killed in crash with Kayla Mendoza

Pictured: Marisa Catronio (upper) and Kaitlyn Ferrante (lower)
Pictured: Marisa Catronio (upper) and Kaitlyn Ferrante (lower)

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – The families of two women killed in a wrong-way crash on the Sawgrass Expressway filed wrongful death lawsuits against the driver on Thursday.

Marisa Catronio was a passenger inside Kaitlyn Ferrante's car when it was hit head on in the early morning hours of November 17 by a car driven by Kayla Mendoza, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The crash killed Catronio, 21. Ferrante, also 21, died the next day.

"To myself I'm saying, 'She's not coming home. She's not coming home. This is real,'" said Catronio's father, Gary. "It's killing us not to know all the facts but we will."

Mendoza, 20, suffered serious injuries in the crash. She remained hospitalized Thursday.

Almost three hours before the crash, Mendoza tweeted, "2 drunk 2 care." A crash report released Friday showed the Florida Highway Patrol suspects Mendoza may have been drinking prior to the crash.

"We want to find out if she was served alcohol somewhere, if she was doing drugs somewhere," said Brett Panter, an attorney representing Catronio's family. "We don't know that now."

In the weeks leading up to the crash, Mendoza made several references to marijuana and drinking on her Twitter account. Florida Highway Patrol spokesman Sgt. Mark Wysocky said the agency is aware of her tweets and is investigating.

Federico Javier Reyes Santiago was also named in the lawsuit, who owned the car that Mendoza was driving.

The families asked for compensation for medical expenses, funeral expenses, and their pain and suffering.

"Other families are not going to go through what we went did," said Catronio. "They're not going to get a phone call at five in the morning and say your daughter's no longer with you."