WICHITA — Tonissha Griffin said she left with Tommie Lee Cameron II to get some cigarettes on a rainy night in July.
But during the trip, Griffin said, she saw him smoke some crack after 10 p.m. last July 25. Minutes later there was a crash that killed 21-year-old Kari Rinehart.
Based on testimony of Griffin and others today at a preliminary hearing, Sedgwick County District Judge Warren Wilbert ordered Cameron to stand trial, charged with reckless second-degree murder.
"Did his attitude change after he smoked the cocaine?" prosecutor Aaron Breitenbach asked Griffin.
"Yes," she said. "Radical. Scary."
Griffin said the car sped up as they drove on Oliver to 29th Street.
"He was flying," she said.
She remembered crying and ask him to pull over and let her out. Cameron roared east on 29th Street.
"All I could see was brake lights ahead of me," she said. "He hit the median, and I closed my eyes, and that's all I remember."
She felt a strong impact.
"I just blacked out," Griffin said.
Police said Cameron's car sideswiped another eastbound vehicle near Woodlawn. His car swerved onto the raised median for several hundred feet.
It went into the westbound lanes, where it slammed into a westbound car, killing the driver, Kari Rinehart. Her twin sister, Kati, and a roommate, Reva Sams, were injured.
Sams said the women had just left Walmart. She testified she next remembered waking up in the hospital. She told the judge she is still recovering from her injuries.
Defense attorney Alice Osburn cross-examined Griffin about her own use of drugs. Griffin said she'd smoked crack about seven hours before the crash at 10:45 p.m.
Cameron, 36, who has been in a wheelchair since the accident, faces charges of involuntary manslaughter while driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs as an alternative to second-degree murder.
He also is charged with two counts of aggravated battery — for injuries to the two passengers in Rinehart's car — and with possession of a crack pipe.
A sixth count accuses Cameron of driving with a suspended license.