Meantime, family members mixed with total strangers at a makeshift memorial set up on the spot where 6-year-old Brandon Abrams died.
“Everybody can feel the loss of a child,” said neighbor Jane Withers. Withers sits in a chair in front of a bucket where passers-by are dropping off checks and cash for the child’s funeral arrangements.
The candles and stuffed animals mark the spot where the first-grader’s body came to rest where, according to police, Landin lost control of his family’s Ford pickup, jumped the curb and struck the boy.
Steve Abrams said his only grandson was waiting for the ice cream truck late Thursday afternoon.
“I was devastated, totally devastated. This is horrible for a person to drive a car, to worry about what? Being 17, drunk, and going after his cell phone? That stuff has to stop,” said Abrams.
Police said Landin had no driver’s license.
Besides intoxication manslaughter, the teenager faces charges of driving without a license, as well as illegal use of a cell phone: It is unlawful for teenaged drivers in Texas to use their phones while behind the wheel.
Nine-year-old Haven Watson placed hand-drawn hearts among the toys and along the fence line where Brandon lost his life. Haven lives next to the scene.
Her father says she heard the crash from her room and used the homemade drawings to express how she felt about losing a playmate.
“That’s kind of how she is. She’s a very loving little girl. She’s got a big heart,” said Tom Watson.
Landin ( POS ) remains in jail on a charge of intoxication manslaughter.