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Alleged Drunk Driver Backs Van Onto 4-Year-Old Boy In Dartmouth

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DARTMOUTH (CBS) – A 4-year-old boy was struck by an alleged drunk driver while playing in his yard in Dartmouth on Thursday.

Pedro Roias, 64, was allegedly drunk when he backed up his minivan, crashed through a fence and ran over the boy at the home on Buttonwood Road.

The boy suffered broken bones and some internal injuries and was transported to a Rhode Island hospital. The boy, Cole, returned home on Thursday and is doing OK, but still has tire marks on his legs.

A witness said Roias was backing out of his driveway and kept going at a high rate of speed, crashing through the fence on the other side of the street. Another witness said she had to climb into the minivan and turn off the ignition.

Patrolman Matt Beauparland, who was one of the first to respond to the scene, visited Cole Thursday afternoon. He gave Cole his police hat, who then, with some guidance from his grandmother, saluted the officer and gave him a high five.

Roias was arrested and faces several charges, including OUI and operating to endanger. He was ordered held without bail.

Cole’s grandmother, Maria Silvio wants to get a message out to drivers: “Stop drinking. Think about the innocent kids that are out there, innocent kids.”

He was appointed an attorney and ordered held without bail until a dangerousness hearing could be conducted. That hearing would establish the danger Roias poses to the community at large. It is tentatively scheduled for July 3.

WBZ-TV’s Bree Sison and Karen Anderson contributed to this report.

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