Police seek vehicle in hit and run that left child, 7, in critical condition

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A young boy is in critical condition Thursday morning after he was struck by a vehicle Wednesday night on the south side. The car left the scene.

David Lopez, 7, remains in critical condition at Riley Hospital for Children with head injuries, a broken left femur and a fractured pelvis. Doctors are watching him closely and constantly monitoring him in the Intensive Care Unit.

"He is quiet most of the time. He is pretty nice," said Elwin Martinez, a friend of Lopez.

Detectives with the Metro Hit and Run unit are out following every lead that comes in, but they're asking for the public's help in this case.

Police are looking for an older model, larger box-style maroon car which may have some type of front end damage. It was seen at East Troy Avenue and South Walcott Street around 9:20 p.m. Officers at the scene say the car, which may be a maroon Oldsmobile Delta 88, was traveling east on Troy when it struck the boy as he crossed the street.

The vehicle continued east on Troy Avenue as it left the scene.

Witnesses tell police that several boys were crossing the street when the seven-year-old was hit. Lopez was following a group of older boys.

"I didn't see him and then the car just passed by and I saw him fall down and hit the ground," Martinez said.

Neighbors said they heard a loud bang or thump. At first, it wasn't completely clear what had happened.

"I thought it might have been a gunshot," said Jason Russell. "I didn't hear any screeching tires or anything like that. When we got out here, there was a car stopped actually to block the kid because traffic kept flying by."

"It sounded like two cars colliding together and I ran over there where he was laying in the middle of the street," said Timothy Bacher.

After Bacher called 911, paramedics rushed Lopez to the hospital with critical injuries, but still alive.

Martinez never imagined any driver would hit his friend and keep going.

"Most people would try to stop to see if he is okay, but he just didn't care," he said.

Police are asking anyone with information about the crash or the suspect vehicle to contact Crime Stoppers at 262-TIPS.