CLEVELAND — Cleveland police are searching for a hit-and-run driver who struck a 12-year-old boy as he was trying to cross West 132nd Street on Monday night.
A surveillance camera mounted on a house in the neighborhood was rolling as the car, believed to be a Toyota Corolla or Camry, struck Martin Lattner around 8 p.m.
The boy’s father, Marty Lattner, told Fox 8 News that he is counting his blessings that his son is still alive.
Martin Lattner suffered relatively minor abrasions, bumps and bruises.
The family is now asking for the public’s help to identify the hit-skip driver.
“It’s not only important just to find them just because it’s a hit-and-run, but just to show them that they can’t do stuff like that,” said Marty Lattner.
The surveillance camera that captured the hit-and-run is somewhat unusual for a residential neighborhood, but a neighbor said she decided to put up the camera because of a recent rash of crimes.
The camera also shows how the boys who were playing with Martin Lattner tried to catch up to the car to get a look at the license plate.
“It was great, I loved it, especially the kid that chased the car all the way down the street,” said Marty Lattner. “That’s fantastic, that’s fantastic.”
The homeowner who installed the camera heard a thump when Martin Lattner was hit and tried to pursue the vehicle in his pick-up truck.
The man’s wife said the same sense of justice that motivated the family to put up the camera has prompted their interest in helping the victim’s family and Cleveland police find the driver who left Martin in the street.
Sandra Banig told Fox 8, “You know, they shouldn’t be speeding through the neighborhood as it is, and to hit a child, no matter if the child ran out in front of the car, or anything else, you need to stop and take responsibility for the action that was done.”
Anyone with information on the hit-and-run driver or the vehicle is asked to call Cleveland Police.