MIAMI GARDENS (CBSMiami) – A five-year-old South Florida boy is speaking out days after he and his cousin were mowed down by a car allegedly fleeing from police.
Jermaine Morrell Jr. and his cousin Willie Evans Jr. were both struck when they were in the front yard of a home at 15640 NW 39th Place early Sunday night.
According to the boy’s great grandfather, the suspect, Giovanni Lloyd, 18, drove into the yard and knocked down a mailbox and several cars before hitting the children.
CBS4’s Peter D’Oench spoke with Morrell Jr. at his bed inside Jackson Memorial’s Holtz Children’s Hospital where, ironically, the child was spending time with his favorite game on Play station: “Cars,” just days after police say a stolen, speeding car nearly took the child’s life.
“We (were) running on the streets and a car came and hit us,” Morrell said. His mother told D’Oench that her son has a fractured left foot, scrapes on his face and bruised lungs.
For the first time since the accident, he was able to take some small steps, with the help of nurses and a walker that he uses.
“Where did it hurt when you got hit by the car?” asked D’Oench.
“On my hands and on my legs,” said Morrell.
“How are you doing?” D’Oench.
“Good,” Morrell answered.
“How do you feel?” D’Oench asked.
“Good,” said the child.
“Do you feel like you’re getting better?” D’Oench asked.
Morrell nodded his head.
He also had some words for the driver who hit him.
“I say don’t hit people with your car no more,” Morrell said. Don’t go speeding no more.”
He told D’Oench he looks forward to going home and getting back to his kindergarten class at Brentwood Elementary School. He has already missed a field trip. His mother says he should be able to go home when his ability to walk improves.
“Thank God, thank God,” said his mother Tameka Lee. “This could have been worse. This was a senseless act, a senseless act. He can’t have any horseplay, any running around for 8 weeks. I’m going to have a time trying to slow him down.”
Morrell Jr.’s great grandfather, James Ridley, said it’s a miracle that the boys survived.
“How it didn’t kill them, I don’t know,” said Ridley.
Police said Lloyd was speeding through the neighborhood in a stolen car. After the accident, Lloyd allegedly fled the scene on foot but was later arrested.
Evans Jr. was released from Holtz Children’s Hospital on Wednesday. His mother told D’Oench that he had a concussion, lacerated liver, and a wound to the head.
The victim’s parents believe the authorities are partly to blame for injuries to the children.
“I think if Miami Gardens Police were not speeding, my son would be OK and he would not be in the hospital right now and the situation wouldn’t have happened,” said Willie Evans Sr.
A police spokesperson said the officers did everything by the book by driving no faster than 40 miles per hour, keeping their distance from the suspect, and allowed a perimeter to be set up. They also noted that Lloyd had seven prior arrests.
Lloyd faces charges that include eluding police, drag racing on a highway and leaving the scene of an accident with injuries. He was released after posting a bond totaling nearly $26,000.
“I don’t know why some stole a car and put people at risk in a neighborhood where kids play,” said Tameka Lee. “It just makes no sense.”