A six-year-old boy was left with a fractured skull, memory loss and a fear of the outside world after being knocked down by an electric scooter, his family have said.
Young Jamie Smith was walking in Elston Fields on the Saffron Lane estate in Leicester with his dad last August when he was hit by the scooter.
He was airlifted to the Queen’s Medical Centre in Nottingham to be treated for multiple injuries that left him ‘unrecognisable’ to himself.
He has since recovered physically but his family say has been left with “constant fear”.
On behalf of his family, his older sister Brooklyn Smith said in a statement: “Our hearts broke when we found out Jamie had been knocked over, physically and mentally we were heartbroken, and in a state of complete panic and anger.”
At the time of the incident the rider fled from the scene but was identified after an appeal was put out by Jamie’s family and friends.
A 17-year-old who can’t be named for legal reasons, was charged with causing a serious injury by dangerous driving, failing to stop after a road traffic collision, failing to report a road traffic collision, using a motor vehicle without insurance, using a motor vehicle without a MOT certificate and driving a vehicle otherwise in accordance with a licence.
Jamie’s family say he “still can’t comprehend why someone would do this to him.”
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The statement released by the family said: “Accident or not this has potentially ruined my baby brother’s life and the boy who did this has shown no remorse whatsoever.
“Since the incident Jamie has had quite bad memory loss, nightmares and an irrational fear of the outside world.
“He over thinks everything in the worst possible scenario and has a constant fear regardless of where he is. Jamie has also been out of school which has impacted his learning and concentration massively.
“He isn’t able to be a child anymore.
“This one incident has put a huge wrecking ball in his life and it’s not just affected his face and body it’s affected his trust, his friendships and almost every aspect of his life and it is heart-breaking to see.
“A six year old boy shouldn’t have to live with what he is living with, the scars may have faded but to him and us it’s still very fresh in our minds.
“We are as a family just want to wrap him up in cotton wool and we’d never wish for this to happen to anyone, let alone a poor defenceless little boy. We are broken.”
The 17-year-old pleaded guilty to the charges at Leicester Youth Court on Monday March 22, and awaits sentencing on Monday April 12.
Leicestershire Police are now warning people about the dangers of electric scooters.
PC Kieran Dempsey from Leicestershire Roads Policing Unit and the investigating officer, said: “As this case has demonstrated, electric scooters are dangerous vehicles in the wrong hands and are currently illegal to use both on the road and in public areas in Leicestershire.”
He added: “In Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland it is illegal to use an electric scooter on a public highway.
“The government is currently running trials of electric scooters (e-scooters), however this trial is not taking place in the Leicestershire force area.
“If you use an e-scooter illegally you could face a fine, get penalty points on your licence, and the e-scooter could be impounded. If your actions results in someone being injured, as in this case, you could face prosecution.”
The force advise users to check here for government guidelines on electric scooters.