Woman dies after driving car into Fall Creek

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) -25-year-old Miranda Dermanelian died Friday afternoon at IU Methodist Hospital after driving her car into Fall Creek Friday morning.

Witnesses watched in horror as events unfolded.  Investigators are still trying to solve the mystery of why she drove into Fall Creek at the peak of rush hour near Allisonville Road and Binford Boulevard, one of the busiest intersections in Indianapolis.

“It was like a blink of an eye. It was like a nightmare.  It just happened so quick,” said  Arias Howard, an eyewitness to what happened.

Another witness, Phyllis Hart, said she was on her morning walk when she saw the incident.

“I was walking on the bridge and a car came right through the bridgeway and just splashed into the water, speeding kind of fast.  It just splashed into the water,” she said.

It was just after 8 a.m. at the intersection of Binford Boulevard and Allisonville Road when witnesses noticed a white SUV driven by Dermanelian speeding south on Allisonville.

Lyndsey Madinger was driving nearby.

“She flew through the red light, almost hit a couple of cars, went right into the water. Three people went into the water, we all kind of pulled over. Everybody was getting out of their cars,” said Madinger.

Three witnesses, a woman and two men jumped into the water, using a hammer to break a window, but they couldn’t get Dermanelian out. Rita Reith said the current was swift in Fall Creek.

“The car was pushed about 35 yards down stream, where it then submerged into the water,” she said.

The three rescuers were gone when rescue crews arrived – 21 minutes after 911 got the call that a diver was in the water. Three minutes later, Dermanelian was pulled to shore.

Laure Peters was there.

“I saw them bring her up and she was very blue. It was very scary. I felt very sorry for her,” said Peters.

The SUV was pulled out a short time later.  It was 35 feet from shore in 8 feet of 46 degree fast moving water.

The eyewitnesses told 24-Hour News 8 they thought it took a long time for rescue crews to get to Fall Creek and a long time to get a boat in the water.

But IFD said it had a boat in the water within 15 minutes of being dispatched, despite heavy rush hour traffic, a diver was in the water within 21 minutes.

Miranda Dermanelian died Friday. Following an autopsy Saturday morning, the Marion County Coroner’s Office determined that Dermanelian’s death was caused by asphyxia due to drowning, a release said.

Indiana Conservation Officers are investigating the incident and what factors led to Dermanelian ending up in the water. Officers say toxicology results could take several weeks.

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