AUSTIN (KXAN) — Jamie White remembers when her husband and three of their children, including 2-year-old Allie, went to Old Settlers Park in Round Rock one Sunday in September 2019. The family was there to play soccer when tragedy struck.
“Allie was standing right here,” said White as she stood in the same spot her daughter did on that Sunday.
“She walked behind [her dad], and she came in this direction. And then she stepped off this curve. And it was about right here that she was hit.”
White said at the last minute a distracted driver made a quick right turn where Allie was crossing — slamming into her — as her dad tried to get her out of the way.
“The driver was so focused on that conversation, and she had her phone to her face,” she said.
First responders did what they could, White said, but eventually, Allie died.
“I was in complete devastation. I was in shock,” she said. “I didn’t know what was going on. I could not understand how this could have happened, I couldn’t understand how someone could be so reckless that there were so many kids in this parking lot. There were soccer games going on all throughout that field, and yet, this driver didn’t watch for kids. They were all over the parking lot.”
Today, White continues to share Allie’s story in hopes of saving others.
“The driver is still out on our roads today. There have been no consequences for that person,” she explained. “We are at peace with it simply because of our faith. We believe that the Lord will have his say in the end. What I can say is that I just hope that we save lives through Allie’s story.”
Now, more than two years later, the family still remembers their sweet, unicorn-loving 2-year-old every day.
“She was just such a happy baby,” White said. “So much light in her eyes just sparkled. She just — she was full of joy and laughter, and she was amazing.”
Since Allie’s passing, White began Allie’s Way, a foundation aimed to end distracted driving. She shares Allie’s story across the state and country whenever she has an opportunity.
A grand jury did not indict the driver involved in this crash.
Distracted driving is not only deadly and dangerous, it’s illegal. Since 2017, it has been illegal to read, write or send a text while driving in Texas. Violators can face a fine of up to $200.
Williamson County District Attorney Shawn Dick explained drivers in cases similar to Allie’s could face manslaughter, which is a second-degree felony that could result in two to 20 years in jail or a criminally negligent homicide charge, which is a state jail felony. Under SJF, a person could face six months to two years behind bars. Both of these charges could result in fines of up to $10,000.