LAWRENCE (CBS) – Lawrence Police are hoping a video can help them solve a case. It was recorded the night a little girl ran into a street in Lawrence, and was hit by an SUV.
But it’s what happened next that has police and her family so upset.
“I was screaming, I was scared, I was crying, I didn’t know what to do,” says Yahaira Guevaria remembering her six-year-old daughter running into Easton St. in Lawrence and being hit by a white Toyota Highlander as other kids played nearby.
“She had some cuts, some bruises. I believe she had a chipped bone in her foot. Nothing of serious nature. She was released that night,” says Lawrence Police Chief John Romero.
Chief Romero says the incident may have been an accident at first, but he says it turned into a crime when the driver hesitates, then takes off, leaving the injured girl behind. “If he would at least stop and see if I needed help, my daughter needed help, that he’s sorry for what happened it would have been different. He hesitated and stopped, but he just left, he didn’t care and eventually I want him to pay for what he did,” says the little girl’s mother.
The kids at the scene describe the driver as an Asian man. The video caught a portion of his license plate. It reads V-619. “I would hope that the person would have the decency to surrender himself to us,” says Chief Romero. “I have my daughter. She hardly sleeps. She has nightmares. She screams, she says ouch like it hurts,” says her mother.
WBZ-TV spoke with a witness, 15-year-old Franklin Laras, who waved to the car to stop when he saw six year old Yiaraliz Rodriguez slip and fall into the path of the oncoming vehicle.
“I was waving my arms saying, ‘stop’, ‘stop’ because I saw her and he would have had time. He ran over the leg and felt it, slowed down ran over the leg again and stopped,” said Laras. But not for long, says Laras, who believes the driver looked in the rear-view mirror, saw the girl on the ground and took off. Laras scooped her up and quickly brought her to the sidewalk.
“She wasn’t even crying that’s how much in shock she was,” he said. He was only able to get a partial license plate and then drove around Lawrence for the next 45 minutes to see if they could find the driver.
Six-year-old Yairaliz Rodrigues is home, shaken but alive. Her mother hopes she can return to school next week. “I think it was a miracle,” says her mom.
When he’s caught the driver faces possible charges for leaving the scene of an accident with injuries. If you have any information, the Lawrence police would like to hear from you.
WBZ-TV’s Beth Germano contributed to this report.