Family of 8-year-old hit by car talks
CHATTANOOGA (WRCB) - Olga Estrada has spent the last 24 hours in the intensive care unit at T.C. Thompson Children's Hospital, hoping for a miracle.
"I don't know how this happened to my child," said Olga Estrada through a translator.
Her son Mario was hit by a car on Gadd Road.
"They just found him lying on the ground," said Estrada.
The eight year-old suffered a severe brain injury.
"There was blood all around him and he wasn't moving at all," said Heather Sierra, a neighbor who rushed to the scene, "he wasn't talking, wasn't moving."
The children who witnesses the accident told police Mario ran out into the road and didn't see the car coming.
"There was also a witness on the scene who said she tried to keep the child from crossing the street at the time he ran out in front of the car," said Sgt. Jerri Weary, "but I don't know if he just didn't hear her or didn't see the car."
The accident was initially reported as a hit and run because the driver of the car took off.
Moments later, the car came back. A man and woman were inside.
"We don't believe they were trying to avoid prosecution<" said Weary, "we don't know if they were spooked when it initially happened of if they didn't realize they had in fact hit someone."
For now, the couple is not facing charges.
Investigators are analyzing measurements and samples taken at the scene looking for answers.
Neighbors worry about their congested road, and the families who live on it.
"There are kids all around this neighborhood that just walk around the sidewalks," said Sierra.
While authorities don't believe speed was a factor, they say the investigation is on-going.