EAST HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) -- An 8-year-old boy is in critical condition after he was struck by a car while he was riding his bike.
"All I heard was 'boom,' and came outside, he was lying down," said neighbor Brandon Johnson.
The crash happened around 11:24 p.m. Thursday night on Plain Drive in East Hartford. The driver, 52-year-old Paul Gronda, lives in the area. Police say he was driving on a suspended license. Neighbors say the street is a de facto racing strip.
"Serious, because the off-ramp of the highway is right at the end of the road, so people tend to just fly through here like it doesn't mean anything, and kids are here," one neighbor said.
"He definitely was speeding, and there was a beer can right there, but he definitely was speeding," Johnson said.
The incident happened right along the straightaway of black top about an eighth of a mile long.
"We've been trying to get speed bumps in here for years," one sad. "And, I mean, we've been to town hall meetings."
However Mayor Marcia LeClerc says that's just not true.
"Well, I've been here three years and prior to that I was on the Council, and there was no public outcry for speed bumps," she said.
At least one neighbor is questioning parental judgment.
"You can walk out and all the little kids will be in the street riding bikes at night," said Shasarey Smith. "And it's ridiculous because, where's the parents?"
As for remedies, the mayor wants them first for what's already happened.
"We will meet with the neighbors at a later date, but right now our focus is on the care and concern generated for the child," LeClerc said.
The child was transported to the Connecticut Children's Medical Center in Hartford where he is in critical condition.
The accident reconstruction team is investigating the crash.
The child has not yet been identified.
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