UPDATE: Toddler In Critical Condition

Mother Accidentally Runs Over Daughter In Driveway

Posted: June 15, 2013

Editor's Note: The following is an update to a story posted at 1:15 p.m. The original story appears at the end of this update.

HARRISONBURG — Penny Shelley screamed from across the street, trying to grab the attention of the woman behind the wheel.

But she could do nothing to stop the horrific scene unfolding before her eyes.

“I tried to holler and scream that the baby was underneath the car,” Shelley said Saturday afternoon as Harrisonburg police pieced together what led to a 2-year-old girl being run over by her mother in the driveway of the family’s home on East Johnson Street.

The toddler was taken to Rockingham Memorial Hospital and then flown to the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville, where she was in critical condition as of Saturday evening, according to a statement from the Harrisonburg Police Department.

Police have not released the identities of those involved in the incident, which remains under investigation Saturday evening.

It’s not clear whether charges will be filed, but by all accounts from witnesses, the incident was merely a tragic accident.

Emergency crews were called to the scene at 189 E. Johnson St. at about 12:40 p.m., where a handful of neighbors acted quickly but were unsuccessful in trying to lift the Toyota Camry off of the toddler. Neighbors say her mother unknowingly drove the vehicle onto the girl and stopped.

After the effort to lift the Toyota proved futile, the girl’s father drove the vehicle off of her.

The toddler lay motionless when the first officer with the Harrisonburg Police Department arrived on the scene.
Personnel with the Harrisonburg Fire Department and Rescue Squad were not far behind.

Witnesses said the girl had stopped breathing at one point but started to breathe again before being taken to RMH.

The DN-R will update this story as additional details become available and will have a complete report in Monday’s print and online editions.


Original story posted at 1:15 p.m. Saturday

— A toddler was accidentally run over this afternoon by a family member in their driveway on East Johnson Street, according to accounts from neighbors and witnesses.

Rescue crews responded to 189 E. Johnson St. in Harrisonburg at about 12:30 p.m. The 2-year-old girl was motionless but the nature and seriousness of her injuries could not be immediately confirmed.

Witnesses said she had stopped breathing at one point but then started to breathe again.

She was transported to Rockingham Memorial Hospital by ambulance.

Neighbors say the girl's mother was driving when the girl was struck. The vehicle came to a stop on top of the girl, and a handful of neighbors tried unsuccessfully to lift the Toyota Camry off of her.

The girl's father then backed the car up, freeing the child.

It’s not known at this time whether charges will be filed. Police were on the scene investigating the incident as of 2:15 p.m. and did not release further information.

The Daily News-Record will have more on this developing story as details become available and will have a complete report in Monday’s print and online editions.

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