By Jason Schwartz
Authorities on Wednesday charged a Florida City man with the deaths of five young people in the April 13 crash in Riviera Beach.
Accompanied by his father and attorney, Jabari Shahid Kemp, 21, turned himself in on five counts of vehicular homicide and five counts of driving under the influence causing death after toxicology reports concluded that he was high on THC, an ingredient in marijuana, at the time of the crash. All the charges are second degree felonies.
Investigators said Kemp was driving his 2008 Mercedes CLK 350 at a “high rate of speed” when he ran a red light at Blue Heron Boulevard and slammed into the Lexus driven by Jason Alexander Mahlung, 21. Kemp was coming off the exit ramp from Interstate 95.
Killed in the crash were Mahlung, his passengers, Makita Campbell, 14; Shonteria T. Grimsley and Christina Oliver-Joseph, 17; and Orane O. Cummings, 22. All, except Mahlung, died at the scene.
According to the Florida Highway Patrol arrest report released Wednesday, a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputy stopped Kemp four hours prior to the crash for going 90 miles per hour in the southbound center lane on I-95 just south of the 45th Street exit. The deputy said he smelled a strong odor of marijuana coming from Kemp’s Mercedes, so he asked him to get out of the car.
It was raining so the deputy quickly patted down Kemp and placed him in his cruiser while he searched Kemp’s car for marijuana, according to the report. He found none so he issued Kemp a speeding ticket and let him leave after he signed for it.
After Kemp was allowed to leave, the deputy returned to his car and “found a small clear bag with a green grassy substance inside” on the backseat. The substance later tested positive for marijuana.