There likely was nothing three drivers could have done to avoid hitting and killing a teenager Tuesday morning, Walton County’s sheriff said. But two of them kept on driving, leaving a 16-year-old to die.
“I can’t believe that someone driving the car that struck the kid couldn’t see what was going on,” Sheriff Joe Chapman told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “Striking the kid was unavoidable, but they did have the option to stop.”
Investigators believe the teenager, Jacob Little of Monroe, was riding his skateboard to school when it rolled away from him. When Jacob went to retrieve it, he stepped into busy morning traffic, Chapman said.
“He was on the roadway,” the sheriff said. “When he was struck, he was in the turning lane to go into the Waffle House.”
The incident happened around 6:40 a.m. Tuesday in the 1200 block of Broad Street near Double Springs Church Road in Monroe, the Georgia State Patrol said. Jacob attended nearby Monroe Area High School.
Two-lane Broad Street is among the most congested area roads at that time of morning, Chapman said.
State troopers and deputies believe Jacob was struck by three vehicles — a Honda, a Ford pickup and a Chevrolet Tahoe — with the impact carrying him across lanes.
“The Honda was southbound, knocked the kid into the northbound lane,” Chapman said. “The truck knocked him back into the southbound lane.”
After the Ford pickup driver hit the boy, he was then struck by a Chevrolet Tahoe. The driver of the Ford stopped at the scene of the wreck, but the Honda and Chevrolet drivers did not, the GSP said. Other drivers not involved in the wreck also stopped to help Jacob, but it was too late, Chapman said.
The Ford’s driver, whose name was not released, was not charged, Chapman said. But when the other drivers are located, they are expected to face hit-and-run charges and possibly vehicular homicide, the sheriff said.
Investigators spent much of the day gathering any available surveillance footage from area businesses.
A few blocks away, at Jacob’s home, family members pleaded for those responsible to surrender to police.
“You can’t run. You can’t hide,” Danny Little, Jacob’s uncle, told Channel 2 Action News. “You need to come forward. Go ahead and get it behind you. It’s just getting worse and worse.”
Anyone with information about the accident is asked to contact the Walton County Sheriff’s Office at 770-267-6557.
Staff writer Mike Morris contributed to this article.