Family of Darisha Bailey Vath speak on update murder charges to Dylan Simmons
(ABC 6 News) – There are new murder charges in the case of 17-year-old Rochester native Darisha Bailey Vath, who was the victim of a hit-and-run in Forest Lake, Minnesota, last month.
20-year-old Dylan Simmons of Forest Lake is now being charged with second-degree murder, criminal vehicular homicide, and three additional counts of assault with a dangerous weapon.
The charges are a relief to Darisha’s family members, Darius Bailey (father), Sarath Vath (mother), and Daisha Bailey Vath (older sister), but they said those charges should have been made against Simmons originally.
They are satisfied with where the case against Simmons currently sits, but they are still waiting for charges on the second individual who was in the car with him on July 16.
A month since a Rochester family suffered the worst night of their lives, they are now beginning to see justice brought to the man behind the wheel of the car that killed their daughter.
“It’s been tough,” said Darius Bailey on how the last month has gone. “There’s been a lot of help from our extended family and the community.”
“We’re a really close family,” added Sarath Vath. “They’re hurting just like us but they’ve been really supportive in all this.”
On Thursday a cover band concert put on by Burden of Youth at Lakeside Memorial Park wrote and sang a tribute song to Darisha for her family.
Simmons is now known to not have been alone in the car outside of Lakeside Memorial Park on July 16. Darisha’s family confirmed there was someone in the passenger seat that night. From what witnesses told the family, there was no effort by this passenger to stop Simmons from running over Darisha.
“I just think that the passenger should see the same fate because he was included. He didn’t try to make it stop because it was three times he drove towards the kids. He didn’t jump out the car,” said Darius Bailey.
“He didn’t call 911,” added Sarath Vath.
“He even said they knew that they hit her. And then they drove off, and those feel like crimes all in itself,” said Daisha Bailey Vath.
Now the family is hoping both individuals in the car that night are brought to justice. They know Darisha’s spirit and memory are keeping them strong for the days they will be in court, forced to relive that horrific night.
“I know she wouldn’t want me to get too angry,” said Vath. “She’s with me every day keeping me strong in all this.”
Forest Lake Police have confirmed they are still investigating the passenger but have several more witnesses to interview before they decide to press charges.