Young boy goes on joy ride

March 26, 2008 4:59:45 AM PDT
He's not nearly old enough to drive, but that didn't stop a local youngster from stealing a luxury car and hopping on the freeway. His tour of Houston started near the Gulf Freeway and South Loop, went north on the East Loop, west on I-10, and ended at Waco. Investigators say it all happened after a confrontation with his assistant principal.

The student goes to ABC Behavioral and Academic Center. He was reportedly sent to the school after some troubles at an HISD elementary school.

School leaders believe the 10-year-old stole keys to the assistant principal's car when he was in his office Tuesday morning. Then in the afternoon the student darted out during a bathroom break.

"They realized there was a person trying to stop a student from exiting the premises in a car," said school spokesperson Tammy Lanier.

School surveillance shows the boy driving the assistant principal's 2007 BMW and taking off on an almost ten mile joy ride. It's believed he drove on at least three major freeways, from the Gulf Freeway to the Loop to I-10 East.

Eyewitness Clarence Bourne says he just missed being hit.

"I didn't know there was a kid, I thought the car was going by itself," he told us.

Bourne says next the student struck a parked truck.

The boy then ran to his former school, Nat Q. Henderson Elementary, and into the principal's office. That's when the police were called.

"They're never too young to pull such pranks, if you will," Lanier said. "It really is a shocking and unfortunate incident."

School officials say this may not be the first time the student has taken a car.

He was taken to a detention center after the ride. There is no word if he will face any charges. School leaders say they are working closely with his mother to get him some help.

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