MILWAUKEE (WITI) -- A young mother of three died in a crash early on Thanksgiving morning. Now, her long-time boyfriend and the father of her children is facing charges. Investigators say Steven Griffin drove drunk and crashed his SUV.
29-year-old Griffin is facing the following charges:
Griffin made his first court appearance in the case on Monday, December 1st.
"It's an incredibly tragic case, but it's also incredibly serious," a court official said Monday.
30-year-old Sheri Klever died following the crash that occurred in the 6900 block of N. 91st Street Thursday, November 27th.
Officials say an SUV being driven by Griffin left the road, struck a metal light pole and two trees and then rolled. Klever was pronounced dead at the scene.
Steven Griffin and Sheri Klever
Griffin was seemingly distraught after the crash. A criminal complaint says witnesses heard him saying:" Sheri, breathe. You're the mother of my kids."
Additionally, a witness says Griffin told people at the scene that morning: "I'm going to jail. Go take care of my kids."
Following the crash, Griffin was transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital for a blood draw. While entering the hospital he allegedly stated that he "killed her" and wanted officers to kill him. Griffin’s blood alcohol content was .191 g/100 ml.
In court on Monday, December 1st, $25,000 cash bail was set for Griffin.
"If you are to post that Mr. Griffin, you could be turned over to the WCS Intoxicated Driver Program with the additional conditions of portable breathalyzer and absolute sobriety and requiring not to drive without a valid license," a court official said on Monday.
At the time of the crash on Thanksgiving morning, Griffin's license was revoked due to a prior drinking and driving conviction.
Danyel Brost, Sheri’s cousin, says she got a phone call early Thursday morning regarding the crash.
“I got the phone call about 5:00 a.m. and it was heart-wrenching. It just ripped me to pieces. I instantly was worried about the kids. She’s got a-month-and-a-half-old son, a six-year-old daughter and an eight-year-old daughter. This is really going to be painful for them. They loved their mom and she was a wonderful mom. They are going to be devastated,” Brost said.
There has been a memorial fund set up in honor of Sheri Klever. Donations can be made at any U.S. Bank branch.
A visitation for Klever will be held on Tuesday, December 2nd at Schmidt and Bartelt on Menomonee Avenue in Menomonee Falls from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. A funeral will be held on Wednesday, December 3rd at Salem Lutheran Church on N. 107th Street in Milwaukee at 10:00 a.m.