BRANT, N.Y. (WIVB) - The case against Danielle Kellogg is heading to a grand jury. The 24-year-old waived her right to a felony hearing on charges of DWI and vehicular manslaughter in a crash that killed a 7-month-old baby.
Sheriff's deputies were at the court on Friday, ready to testify for the felony hearing. But as soon as everyone arrived, Kellogg's lawyer ended up waiving the hearing.
Our cameras were not allowed inside. And police officers escorted Kellogg in and out of the back door as the accused drunk driver hid her face.
Family members of Baylee Dion attended court in place of her parents, who are grieving the loss of their baby girl.
"This is really the only way to allow this to set in. This has been so surreal it doesn't feel like it actually happened. We just want to thank the community and ask they continue to embrace this family at this time as we need it most right now," said Baylee's uncle, Jared Wilson.
The baby's mother, Denise Hines, was seriously injured in the crash in Brant on Tuesday that ripped her car in two. There was no update from her attorney Friday on her current condition.
Kellogg snuck into and out of court through a back door. And even in the courtroom, two adults stood behind her to shield her from others.Hine's attorney Stephen Boyd said, "Trying to prevent people in the crowd to get a good look at her. She had a hoodie on so it looked like she was trying to hide her appearance a little bit."
Baylee's family hopes some greater good will come from all this tragedy. They want to make a change in society on drunk driving.
"I hope she's treated accordingly and fairly, but I would like to see she will be an individual who will never be able to cause this exact same damage to another family out there," Boyd said.
The judge told Kellogg that while awaiting trial she cannot drink, and she cannot drive at all. If she does, he'll revoke her bail and send her back to jail.
Meantime Baylee's family says the most important thing to them right now is remembering the life lost.
Wilson said, "The only way to describe the emotions going on right now is just emptiness. There's an empty bed where a beautiful infant once lay. There was laughter where there is silence. There's no other way to describe what's going on other than emptiness."
Baylee's family will hold a memorial service Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Wesleyan Church in Hamburg. Kellogg's case will now go to County Court and she remains free on $20,000 bail.
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