Family of 9-year-old struck, killed after being dropped off from Jacinto City school files lawsuit

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Tuesday, November 22, 2022
Van that dropped off 9-year-old boy hits and kills him, police say
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A 9-year-old Jacinto City Elementary School student was killed when the van that just dropped him off at home hit him, police said.

JACINTO CITY, Texas (KTRK) -- A boy's mom and grandma were waiting for him to be dropped off from school when they witnessed his tragic death. Now, they're filing a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver who picked him up from Jacinto City Elementary and ran him over just feet from his home.

The video above is from a previous report.

The van involved in the incident was owned by Isidro Lopez and entrusted to Englantina Lopez, the driver. The family's attorney said they do not have a transportation company registered with the State of Texas.

Attorneys say the family is seeking damages over $1,000,000.

ORIGINAL STORY: Jacinto City Elementary student dropped off by van when the same vehicle hit him, police say

On Oct. 12, a 9-year-old boy was being dropped off from school at his home in the 10500 block of Pillot Street at about 3 p.m.

Investigators said the boy was in a private van that typically takes children to and from Jacinto City Elementary School, where the victim attended.

The boy exited on the van's passenger side and walked toward the front, toward his home across the street. Moments later, Lopez rapidly accelerated forward, striking the child and running over his body, the lawsuit reads.

Attorneys argue that the child could not avoid being struck by Lopez's van because of the speed used to accelerate from a stopped position.

The boy's mother, Jessica Quintanilla, and grandmother Veronica Munoz witnessed the entire incident.

The child suffered head trauma when he died, according to police.

Neighbors told ABC13 in a previous report that they don't have district busing in this area, so private transport vans are a normal way for some students to get to and from school. Eyewitness News called Galena Park ISD to get clarification on this process, but so far, haven't heard back.

Investigating officers noted that Lopez's failure to yield and inattention as the only factors contributing to the incident.

"This is a tragedy, and this should never happen. This family trusted (Isidro and Englantina Lopez) to put their child's safety first - to transport him to and from school. Here, the same van that dropped him off, hit him and ran over him moments later. In front of his own home, in front of his mother and grandmother - how does that even happen? This family has suffered in ways none of us can imagine. Not just that day. He won't be with them at Thanksgiving or Christmas this year or any other. These should be the best years of this child's life. To have it taken from him while his mother and grandmother witnessed it all is unspeakable. The only reason this boy lost his life is because (Isidro and Englantina Lopez) failed to put safety first," the family's attorney, Brant Stogner, said.

SEE RELATED: Decision to charge Jacinto City van driver in 9-year-old's death may come Thursday night