High Speed, Alcohol Blamed for Dubai Crash That Killed Marathon Survivor

Northeastern seniors Victoria McGrath and Priscilla Perez Torres died on Sunday.

Photo via Facebook

McGrath. Photo via Facebook

High speed and alcohol were involved in the Dubai car crash that killed two Northeastern University students, one a survivor of the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, a Dubai prosecutor told the Associated Press.

Northeastern seniors Victoria McGrath and Priscilla Perez Torres, as well as Canadian boxer Cody Nixon and James Portuondo, were reportedly killed Sunday morning when their yellow, two-seat Ferrari 458 Spider jumped a curb near the Jumeirah Lake Towers and struck a pole, splitting the vehicle in half.

According to surveillance footage, McGrath and Torres were seated together in the passenger seat, with Nixon in the middle and Portuondo driving, Dubai Traffic Public Prosecution head Salah Bu Farousha told the AP. Another prosecutor, speaking under condition of anonymity, said that everyone involved had been drinking.

‘‘From my initial investigation, they had lost control of the car,’’ the prosecutor told the AP. ‘‘The road is curved. They were driving at a high speed in a 40-kph (25-mph) zone. The speed did not match at all the speed limit.’’

Hours before the crash, Nixon posted a photo on Instagram, posing with the yellow Ferrari. The caption read: “Just landed into Dubai picked up the Ferrari! Don’t worry I won’t speed ;)”


McGrath, of Weston, Connecticut, suffered severe injuries at the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing. She was near the finish line when a bomb sent shrapnel into her leg, and would have died were it not for first responders applying a tourniquet fashioned from a t-shirt.

“Even as we are working through the pain, we, Victoria’s parents, want to share a brief message. It is a message of faith and clarity,” Jill and Jim McGrath said in a statement. “Victoria’s faith is strong and on display each day. Her faith is true, which is why we can rest assured that she is in Heaven now with our Lord God. This is a great source of comfort—to know that we did not say “goodbye,” but rather, “we will meet again.”