Boy critical after being hit by reversing ‘drug driver’
A LITTLE boy endured hours of surgery and was last night still fighting for his life after being run over by a car driven by a woman who police claim was later caught with illicit drugs in her system.
Jessica Williams, 22, had been picking up her three-year-old child from a Hunter Valley home on Saturday night before the tragedy unfolded.
CCTV shows the two-year-old boy walking behind her Holden Commodore just as it starts to reverse on the driveway in Segenhoe St, Woodberry about 6.30pm.
Neighbours said Williams was hysterical when she realised what had happened while the youngster's father ran to help him.
"The dad raced straight out and picked his son up and brought him up here on the grass," neighbour Ruth Clarke said.
Paramedics raced the boy to John Hunter Hospital where he had surgery on his liver.
Williams was arrested a short time after the incident at a nearby home and taken for mandatory drug and urine checks.
She was charged with dangerous driving and negligent driving causing grievous bodily harm, not reversing safely and altering the amount of illicit drug in her body.
She was bailed to appear at Maitland Local Court on March 28.
Williams told The Daily Telegraph yesterday she would apologise to the boy's father.
"I know the father, and I'll say my sorrys (sic) to his face, this was an accident and my every thought hope and love is with this little boy and his family," she said in an online message to The Telegraph.
Ms Clarke said Williams was struggling to cope.
"She ain't coping either, she's not coping, she turned around and tell her mother to sell the car, because she don't want to drive no more. She is absolutely devastated," she said.
Family members were rallying around the toddler in his hospital bed.
"It is too early to tell (how he will recover) ... He is in a critical state after undergoing immediate surgery on his liver," a relative said.
Inspector Alan Janson said it was a "very tragic and sad accident".
"The young lady was there to pick up her three-year-old child from the house and has lost sight of the two-year-old and reversed down the driveway," he said.
Chief Inspector Phil Brooks urged all drivers to be aware of children near their car.
"We're encouraging all parents, please be aware of their surroundings."