Police: Woman admits she was texting when she hit a child at a bus stop

The mother of the 6-year-old boy who was hit by a car while getting off the school bus believes a guardian angel saved her son.

MORRISTOWN - UPDATE: Morristown Police say a woman admitted that she was texting while driving as she drove around a stopped school bus and hit a child.

Heather Williams, 37, is charged with leaving the scene of an accident involving personal injury, passing a school bus stop sign and texting while driving.

The little boy that she hit, 6-year-old John Paul Taylor, was treated and released from the hospital on Monday. His mother, Jennifer Chess, told WBIR 10News that he was back in school at Lincoln Heights Elementary on Thursday, doing okay except for some sore knees, some cuts, and bruises.

"He was in a neck brace, and I thought the worst," she said. "I thought he broke a bunch of bones. But to me, guardian angels were watching over him."

"To not see him grow up, that would be the worst thing," she added.

According to investigators, Williams said she was texting white driving Monday evening and was unaware that she had hit the child.

“This incident demonstrates, once again, the danger of texting and driving and, that while the child sustained non-threatening injuries in this incident, the outcome could have been far worse,” MPD Chief Roger Overholt said.

Chief Overholt credited the Hamblen County Sheriff's Office with their assistance in tracking Williams down.

Hamblen County Director of Schools Dave Lynch said he's thankful to law enforcement for tracking the driver down, and asks drivers to always pay attention to school zones and stopped buses. 

"We want everybody to obey the law, which is written in a way to keep kids safe," he said. 

"Only thing I know to say is not to text and drive," said Chess. "I hate my son getting hit to show the consequences of a bad decision."

PREVIOUS STORY:

A little boy who was struck by a car while getting off the school bus has been treated and released from the hospital, while police are still looking for the driver that hit him.

According to investigators, the boy was hit Monday evening just after 6 p.m. when he was trying to cross the street on Lincoln Avenue near Kennedy Circle.

Dale Lynch, director of Hamblen County Schools, said the bus was stopped with its stop sign out. Other vehicles stopped, but the driver of a two-door sedan drove around them and the bus, hit the boy, and kept driving.

"We are a very blessed district and he is a very blessed young man because that was a very dangerous situation," Lynch said. "We're very thankful."

Lynch hopes Morristown Police are able to track down that driver.

Investigators said so far, no arrests have been made.

ORIGINAL STORY:

The Morristown Police Department is looking for the driver of a two-door sedan who hit a 6-year-old boy on Monday night.

A crash report from the police department said the incident happened on Lincoln Avenue near Kennedy Circle around 6:05 p.m. Monday.

Authorities took the 6-year-old boy to the Morristown-Hamblen Hospital for possible injuries. No word as of 9:30 a.m. Wednesday on the extent of the injuries.

A witness told police the driver of the sedan hit the boy as the boy exited the front of a school bus to cross the street. The crash report said the bus was stopped legally, and the sedan tried to drive around the rear of the bus before hitting the boy.

Officers were unable to get the make or model of the white or gray sedan.

The driver of the sedan left the scene before officers arrived.

(© 2016 WBIR)


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