Minneapolis police are investigating a hit-and-run near the University of Minnesota that sent a 12-year-old boy to the hospital on Tuesday afternoon.
Police were called to the intersection of southeast Como and 19th avenues shortly after 2:30 p.m. after witnesses reported that a boy had begun to run across Como Avenue near a bus and was struck by a red pickup truck.
"He ran right in front of the bus and the car saw him at the last second, and he stopped and clipped him," witness Cameron Lyles told FOX 9 News.
Lyles said he was shocked by what he and his friend, Claire, witnessed on Tuesday afternoon.
"[The boy] popped up right away and just ran. Then, once he got to the corner it wore off and he felt pain, and that's the knew he was actually hurt," Lyles recalled.
Khalil Mohamed had just stopped at Joe's Market for a snack before heading toward Tuttle Elementary School on Tuesday. By Thursday night, police were still looking for the driver that stopped him from arriving.
Officers tracked the vehicle with Minnesota license plate 248-KLE back to its owner, who has valid insurance but no valid driver's license. The owner told investigators someone else had been driving at the time and that person fled on foot.
Two witnesses on the scene couldn't confirm the driver's identity, but another told police the car's owner was at the wheel at the time.
The vehicle has since been towed as part of the investigation. Anyone with information about the identity of the driver is urged to contact Minneapolis police.
Neighbors in the area tell FOX 9 News they are convinced changes are needed to make the intersection safer for pedestrians, but it's been a struggle to convince officials since the street gets quiet in the afternoon and evening hours.
"There's also the element of the University of Minnesota, so there's a lot of cars coming up and down, a lot of bicyclists," explained 6-year resident John Eichten. "It can be really difficult to cross the street, actually."
Between the buses making regular stops, the pedestrians on the sidewalks, the bicycles in the bike lanes, residents say a change to boost safety is long overdue.
Mohamed remains at HCMC, where he is listed in satisfactory condition. He is expected to fully recover.