7-Year-Old Boy Killed By Ice Cream Truck Driver Who Is Then Attacked By Mob

A 7-year-old boy was reportedly killed in his south Los Angeles neighborhood last night after he was struck by an ice cream truck while riding on the street on a motorized bike. An angry crowd of people then reportedly approached the driver and attacked him with bricks and sticks. Police say the windows of the driver's vehicle were smashed and that someone may have threatened him with a knife during the confrontation.

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Police say the ice cream truck driver was driving just 5 mph but that the child was riding alongside the vehicle on either a motorized or electric bicycle -- he may have even been holding on it, according to reports. The boy fell and reportedly got caught under the truck's rear wheels. The unidentified child was rushed to the hospital in critical condition and died about two hours later.

Witnesses say they heard a loud crash outside. The child was lying on the ground bleeding and his family surrounded him, according to reports. And then something questionable happened: the crowd turned its grief onto the driver and allegedly attacked him. It is believed that the victim's mother may have been one of the attackers, and according to the child's uncle, the family suspects the driver killed the boy on purpose.

As of right now, there's no evidence that this was anything other than a tragic accident. The driver has not been arrested, but police took him into custody simply to protect him from the crowd. He suffered minor injuries and bruises. His truck is reportedly unlicensed.

I have so many conflicting feelings about this story. First and foremost, it's a horrific one and we should keep in mind that the death of an innocent child overrides any and all debates about the crowd's reaction and whether it was appropriate. But I think it's natural to question why this child was on a motorized bike in the middle of the street. Unless all parties involved can agree that this was an unfortunate accident -- and it doesn't sound like the child's family believes that -- we're likely in for a vicious back-and-forth blame game that will have no clear winner.

Do you think someone -- the driver or the child's parents -- should be held responsible for this child's death, or does it sound like a tragic accident?

 

Image via Jeremy Vandel/Flickr

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