Driver who killed Jan Torrisi-Mokwa in bizarre accident on Lindell bridge apologizes

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ST. LOUIS – The woman who caused the deadly crash at the overpass at Lindell and Union over the summer is speaking out about that awful day.

Janet Torrisi-Mokwa, businesswoman and wife of former St. Louis Police Chief Joe Mokwa, died when a piece of the bridge fell onto the car she was driving on Forest Park Parkway.

Damaya Love, 22, said she wasn't speeding that day. The police report backs her up. She admitted she was inexperienced and was working on her turns.

Love said she was making a right turn and overcorrected, and was shocked to see part of the bridge wall fall. She prayed no one was below the bridge and said she only found out hours later that someone died as a result.

St. Louis police determined Love was traveling between 14 and 28 miles per hour and that the bridge rail she hit was not secured. Love said she cannot get that day out of her head.

“Even though it was an accident, knowing that somebody died because of that and I was behind the wheel of a car, that … most likely they’re going to say I was at fault? That is really scary to deal with and I felt like, you know, to honor that person, I’m just not going to drive anymore,” Love said.

The St. Louis Circuit Attorney’s Office is considering criminal charges against Love for being unlicensed and uninsured while driving. She only had her permit at the time of the accident.

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