Wisconsin lawmaker Janet Bewley, 70, involved in car accident that kills mother and young daughter

Wisconsin Senate Democratic Minority Leader Janet Bewley was involved in a fatal car crash Friday that left a mother from Pennsylvania and her young daughter dead.

The accident occurred when Bewley, 70, pulled out of the Maslowski beach parking lot in Ashland and into the path of a car driven by Alyssa Ortman, 27, according to the Ashland Police Department. 

When Ortman’s car collided with Bewley’s at 12.30pm on Friday, it spun across Highway 2 and was hit by another vehicle.

Ortman’s 5-year-old daughter, Khali, was pronounced dead at the scene. Ortman was transported to a nearby hospital where she later died, according to police.

Mere hours after the crash, in a previously scheduled interview, Bewley told Milwaukee Journal Sentinel intern she had undergone cataract eye surgery the day before.

Khali’s father, Brandon Fink, wrote an emotional Facebook post paying tribute to his daughter, who he described as a ‘hilarious, insanely beautiful, and smart girl that had a drive for life that touched so many.’

‘You lit up my life and gave me an ambition and drive I didn’t know was possible,’ Fink wrote. ‘No matter what we just giggled out way through.. my life feels so empty without these giggles.’

In a post made on Monday afternoon, Fink wrote that Bewley had not reached out to him about the accident. 

Alyssa Ortman, 27, with her five-year-old daughter Khali. The pair were killed when their car was struck by Wisconsin Senate Democratic Minority Leader Janet Bewley's car on Friday

Alyssa Ortman, 27, with her five-year-old daughter Khali. The pair were killed when their car was struck by Wisconsin Senate Democratic Minority Leader Janet Bewley’s car on Friday

Wisconsin Senate Democratic Minority Leader Janet Bewley said she had undergone cataract eye surgery the day before the accident

Wisconsin Senate Democratic Minority Leader Janet Bewley said she had undergone cataract eye surgery the day before the accident

Ashland Police Chief Bill Hagstrom told the Ashland Daily Press that Bewley wasn’t injured in the crash and State Patrol was reconstructing the scene. No charges have been filed yet.

‘We’ll be sitting down with them and going over everything as far as determining how it all actually happened,’ Hagstrom said. ‘Then we’ll forward everything to the district attorney for their review because it was a fatal accident.’

Authorities have also said they don’t suspect foul play in the accident. 

‘There’s nothing suspected as far as alcohol or foul play or anything,’ Hagstrom said. 

Alyssa Ortman's 5-year-old daughter, Khali, was pronounced dead at the crash scene. Ortman was transported to a nearby hospital where she later died, according to police

Alyssa Ortman’s 5-year-old daughter, Khali, was pronounced dead at the crash scene. Ortman was transported to a nearby hospital where she later died, according to police

Alyssa Ortman, 27, and her five-year-old daughter Khali. The pair were killed in a car accident on Friday

Alyssa Ortman, 27, and her five-year-old daughter Khali. The pair were killed in a car accident on Friday

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that Bewley fell silent mid-sentence during her phone interview after revealing the cataract surgery she’d received Thursday, just the day before the fatal wreck. 

When asked by the interviewer if she was okay, Bewley said she was, but sounded shaken. 

‘Yeah, I’m OK,’ she said, ‘This is not a good accident.’ 

According to the Mayo Clinic and the American Optometric Association, patients are often advised not to drive for at least 24 hours following the procedure, which removes the natural lens of the eye and replaces it with an artificial lens.

Some doctors even suggest not getting behind the wheel until a patient receives the go-ahead in a follow-up appointment.

Khali's father, Brandon Fink, wrote an emotional Facebook post paying tribute to his daughter, who he described as a 'hilarious, insanely beautiful, and smart girl that had a drive for life that touched so many'

Khali’s father, Brandon Fink, wrote an emotional Facebook post paying tribute to his daughter, who he described as a ‘hilarious, insanely beautiful, and smart girl that had a drive for life that touched so many’

In a post made on Monday afternoon, Fink wrote that Bewley (above) had not reached out to him about the accident

In a post made on Monday afternoon, Fink wrote that Bewley (above) had not reached out to him about the accident

In a statement about the wreck on Monday, Bewley’s office made no mention of the cataract surgery. 

‘This is a heartbreaking event for the community. Our thoughts and prayers are focused on the individuals involved, their families and their loved ones,’ the statement said.

‘Senator Bewley, who was not seriously injured in the accident, wants to thank all the dedicated law enforcement and emergency medical personnel who helped in the aftermath of the accident.’

Bewley, a member of the Senate since 2015, is not seeking reelection.

source: dailymail.co.uk