A 19-month-old boy is dead after being struck by a livery SUV in Chelsea, Massachusetts, on Saturday, police confirmed.
A Toyota C-HR had just picked up a passenger when it struck the Chelsea boy in front of 74 Bellingham Street just before noon, state police said. The boy's mom was there when her child was hit.
Blanco Abndino, who is friends with the child's mother and witnessed the aftermath of the incident, said multiple people called police and the ambulance, and CPR was administered on scene.
"The mommy was shocked,” Abndino said.
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Police said the boy was rushed by ambulance to Massachusetts General Hospital in critical condition with severe head trauma. He later died from his injuries.
Chelsea Police Chief Brian Keyes called the incident "absolutely heartbreaking."
"Our deepest condolences to the family," Keyes said. "Our prayers are with the little boy and his family at this time."
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The driver, identified only as a 45-year-old woman, remained on scene, state police said. She was taken to Whidden Memorial Hospital after complaining of chest pain. There, she was interviewed by a state police detective and Chelsea police officer. It remains to be seen if charges will be filed against her.
Through tears, Abndino explained there's a problem in the area with speeding.
"A lot of people here are crazy and drive very fast," she said. "It’s a problem for everyone.”
It's something echoed by other neighbors who also expressed their discontent with drivers in the neighborhood.
“Definitely a lot of kids in the neighborhood," one man said. "Especially for a toddler to get hit like that, that’s bad.”
The victim's uncle told NBC10 Boston that the child's parents are at a complete loss.
“Devastated. They're traumatized about it. Very sad,” he said.
Further details, including the name of the boy, have not been released. An investigation is ongoing to determine if criminal charges are warranted.
Authorities initially said the vehicle that hit the child was making deliveries, then later said it was a livery vehicle. They also initially said the child was 2 years old, then 22 months old, and finally 19 months old.