2 children hit, 1 killed by suspected drunk driver

March 18, 2012 8:24:34 PM PDT
One family is mourning the loss of a young life and another family is praying their child recovers after a car crashed onto the front porch of an apartment in southwest Houston overnight.

The driver will be charged with intoxication assault and intoxication manslaughter. The surviving child -- a four-year-old boy -- has burns on almost 40 percent of his body.

It happened so fast, neighbors could only watch in fear.

"I saw the car just plow into a group of people. There were kids standing on the stairs," neighbor Bobbie Jo Brewster said.

Police said a father was grilling on the front porch at an apartment on Harwin and Parkfront around 11pm Friday. His son and a friend were playing nearby when a driver lost control on Harwin Dr.

The car missed large tree, bushes, a metal stair case and a pillar, instead barreling right into the little boys who were playing on the porch.

The car then kept going, smashing into the front door of the apartment. The force of the impact cracked the wall and punched in the front door.

"A male that was there jumped on top of the car and was just punching the top of the car, screaming because the kids had just got hit," Brewster said

Officers identified the 27-year-old driver as Luis Hector Lopez-Rodriguez. He's suspected of being drunk when he crashed.

A seven-year old boy died at the scene. The four-year-old boy was burned by the grill. He was rushed to Memorial Hermann Hospital and later transferred to Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston.

"My mom knows the little kids. They come in and out of the house just like it would have been their house. My sister plays around with their sisters," neighbor Octavio Gomez said.

Some neighbors tried to lift the car following the accident, but there was little they could do.

Everyone -- adults and children -- said they are praying.

"That the little kid in the hospital can heal and come back home," Brewster's daughter, Roxie, said.

One mother in particular can relate to the loss.

"My other daughter passed away a year and a half ago. She was playing in a garage and a car fell on top of her," Brewster said. "I just felt their pain."

Neighbors say it's not the first time a car has crashed into that apartment complex.

Please stay with Eyewitness News and abc13.com for updates as they become available.