2 teens charged with racing in crash that killed Edmonds woman in 2021

Molly Lally, 34, was turning left when she was hit by a car going at least 20 mph over the limit, according to new charges.


LYNNWOOD — Two teens were racing in north Lynnwood before causing a crash that resulted in a woman’s death in 2021, according to new charges filed in Snohomish County Superior Court.

Prosecutors charged Sebastian Smith, now 21, and Shay Daniels, now 21, with vehicular homicide in a reckless manner and vehicular assault in the death of Molly Lally, 34. The charges came over two years after Lally’s death.

On Friday, deputy prosecutor Tobin Darrow said the delay in charges was partly due to a “lack of resources” to prosecute the county’s felony crash cases.

The defendants, who were both 18 at the time, were traveling at least 20 mph over the speed limit when Daniels T-boned Lally’s car.

The defendants do not have any past felony convictions. Smith’s lawyer, Michael Sheehy, did not respond to a request for comment Friday. Daniels’ lawyer, Taylor Severns, also did not respond.

On the night of Sept. 6, 2021, Smith was driving west in a Ford Ranger pickup truck “side by side” with Daniels in a BMW on 164th Street SW, the charging papers say. Both had friends in the passenger seats.

Witnesses told police the cars were going at a “very high speed,” according to court documents. They heard a loud crash.

The BMW in the left lane struck the passenger side of an orange Hyundai Veloster driven by Lally, who was turning left onto 25th Avenue, charging papers say. The three cars came to a stop blocking the intersection.

In a statement to investigators, Smith reportedly wrote that he and the BMW driver were going down a hill and “the light at the bottom was green.”

“The BMW passed me and an orange car pulled out in front of it and they crashed and the wreckage hit my truck,” he wrote.

The impact of the BMW had reportedly pushed and rotated Lally’s car 122 feet up the hill on 164th Street. Both cars sustained “catastrophic damage,” the charges say.

Medics reportedly found Lally unconscious in the driver’s seat. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Lally, of Edmonds, died from cerebral contusions and skull fractures, causing a fatal brain injury, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner’s Office determined.

Both defendants denied racing and reported they were driving 40 mph or less, the charging papers say. Skid marks left by the pickup, however, indicated they were moving much faster.

Investigators calculated the pickup was driving between 84 and 96 mph. The BMW was traveling between 62 and 78 mph, according to the charging papers. The speed limit was 40 mph.

The other passengers were taken to Providence Medical Regional Center Everett with minor injuries.

Arraignments for both defendants are scheduled for Wednesday. Prosecutors didn’t object to the defendants remaining out of custody.

In an online fundraiser, loved ones described Lally as a “bright light” extinguished too soon.

“Molly was a wonderful friend to many,” a donator wrote. “Always there with a smile & a laugh. She was taken far too soon. She will be greatly missed. Prayers to the family. Rest in Peace Molly.”

Correction: Shay Daniels is a woman. An earlier version of this story mistakenly said said two men were accused of racing.

Maya Tizon: 425-339-3434; maya.tizon@heraldnet.com; Twitter @mayatizon.

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