HOLLAND, MICH. - For the first time, we're hearing from the driver involved in a crash that killed a grandmother and badly hurt her grandson.
We previously reported the driver, Cameron Burrows, had an extensive driving record. Now, we've learned he's also a registered sex offender.
On Tuesday, Jan. 10, we spoke to Burrows about the crash and his troubled past. WZZM 13 also attempted to talk with the family of the victims but efforts were unsuccessful.
Burrows told us he only remembers bits and pieces after the crash impact.
"I remember hitting," Burrows said. "I remember hearing voices in the ambulance. I remember going, 'I hurt, I hurt.'"
Burrows says his heart is hurting, too.
"My heart goes out to the other family," Burrows said.
He says it comes after a split-second decision one week ago at a yellow light.
"I was debating, I was like, 'Man, do I lock them up or just go through it?' And I made a judgment call, I'm just going to go through it, and that's all I remember man," Burrows said.
Eventually, he learned the worst news. Sandra Deboer, 65, was killed and her 10-year-old grandson, Gavin, badly hurt in the crash.
Burrows says he's been trying to put themselves in that family's shoes.
"I would be very angry, I would be angry with the driver regardless, I would want to blame somebody for it," Burrows said.
Burrows says he was on his way to pay bills, after receiving insurance money from a different crash the previous month. Earlier, we reported that Burrows has an extensive driving record. That includes having his license suspended nine times since 2000, but at the time of the crash, he had a valid license.
"I don't know why this is even being brought up," Burrows said. "Why is my driving record, how does that affect the outcome and the accident of this accident?"
However, we've also learned Burrows has been in more serious trouble with the law. He says he spent six years in prison, after being convicted of criminal sexual conduct in 2006.
The victim was between 13 and 15 years old.
"I know my actions with that girl probably affected her to this day," Burrows said.
About a decade later, his actions are negatively impacting another family.
"It was not intentional, it was not drug induced or alcohol induced," Burrows said.
He says it's also affecting his job as a carpenter because he fractured his knee cap. It's also affected his own family, a wife and three children, he says.
"I'm not a horrible person, I'm a hardworking man, I've got a beautiful family," Burrows said.
Like memories that come and go, Burrows says at times he's also at a loss for words. On Tuesday, he had a teary-eyed apology for the family he's affected.
"I'm sorry that you lost something that I can't replace and I hurt for you and I'm sorry," Burrows said.
Deputies say the investigation is ongoing, and they're waiting for toxicology results.
The Ottawa County prosecutor is expected to review the completed investigation for possible charges against Burrows.
Investigators say the 10-year-old boy, Gavin, was out of the ICU and improving as of last week.
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