Late last month, we told you about heroic Dillon Earl, a Fruita eight-year old, who saved his grandmother's life by taking the wheel of her car on the highway when she had a seizure.
Apparently, Dillon's age was crucial, because a thus-far-unnamed six-year-old Boulder kid didn't do nearly as well during his recent driving attempt. He crashed a van belonging to his mom, Maria Ponce-Ramirez, 41 -- a bit of automotive demolition for which she was ticketed.
Here are the details:
"We responded to the parking lot of a Walgreens at the corner of 30th and Walnut Street at about 10 a.m. on Saturday," says Boulder Police Department spokeswoman Sarah Huntley. "We had been contacted because there had been an accident involving two cars in the parking lot. Our accident investigators were able to determine that a six-year-old boy had gotten into his mother's vehicle, a 1999 Mercury Villager."
The police report features Ponce-Ramirez's account.
"According to the mother, she went into the store with her teenage daughter -- and her son was with her in the store," Huntley continues. "They were waiting at the pharmacy, and she said she didn't realize her son had wandered off and returned to the vehicle. According to the mother, the vehicle was not running but the keys were in it, and the boy apparently started the van and accelerated."
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How a six-year old managed that is unknown. But in any event, Huntley says, he crashed into an unattended Volvo whose owner just happened to be walking out of the Walgreens in time to see the right front corner of the van smack her right quarter-panel. At that point, another passerby rushed to the van, put it in park, turned off the ignition and took the keys -- at which point "the little boy climbed over the front seat into the backseat," Huntley says.
He probably would have dug a hole and climbed inside if he'd had the chance, too.
As a result of this exciting escapade, Ponce-Ramirez was cited for leaving a motor vehicle unattended. "Essentially, that means leaving the keys in the ignition," Huntley explains. At this point, no other charges are anticipated, but, she says, "if we receive more information, we can reevaluate that."
In the meantime, Ponce-Ramirez's son will presumably be banned from driving. Although in another two years, betcha he'll be a lot better.