The family lawyer said it was a miracle that LaDerihanna Holmes survived the impact, as he released security footage from March 29 that shows a black sedan plow into the family home in Lithonia, near Atlanta.
The 9-year-old can be seen playing with her sister just moments before the sedan appears. She tries to run out of the way but is hit directly by the car which bounces off the curb and straight into the house.
The victim suffered multiple fractures, according to ABC News.
The family’s attorney, Chris Stewart, wrote on Twitter, “God is so great. There is no explanation on how my client is alive. I sat with her and can’t believe my eyes and though her road to health will be long, she’s alive.”
The family have released the video in hopes of tracking down two teenagers, who they said fled from the scene. The security footage shows one person run from the house moments after the impact, as family members and neighbors rush to the 9-year-old’s aid.
FLEEING THE SCENE: Police are searching for the driver who plowed into a 9-year-old girl in her front yard in Georgia, leaving her with serious injuries, including multiple broken bones. https://t.co/97I6gyhwLj pic.twitter.com/IRLKjA6qwD
— ABC News (@ABC) April 1, 2019
“The video is really hard to watch but she survived somehow,” Stewart told ABC. “I deal with wrongful death all the time, and I cannot believe she survived it.”
LaDerihanna’s mother, Charlette Bolton, told ABC News, “I just want everybody to pray for LaDerihanna. The community loves her, her school loves her, her friends love her, and I just want the people involved to be caught.”
— ABC News (@ABC) April 1, 2019
She had a message for the driver of the car: “You know what you did. You didn’t try to help my baby,” she said. “You almost killed my baby and I hope you do the right thing and turn yourself in.”
Stewart told ABC that the police had traced the owner of the car, who is in his 30s and was at work at the time of the crash.
Hit-and-Run Deaths at Record High
The report analyzes car crash data from 2006 to 2016.
The AAA notes that the 2,049 fatalities that resulted from hit-and-run crashes in 2016 were the highest number ever recorded. This is a 60 percent increase since 2009.
“Hit-and-run crashes in the United States are trending in the wrong direction,” said Dr. David Yang, executive director of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, according to an AAA news release. “Our analysis shows that hit-and-run crashes are a growing traffic safety challenge and the AAA Foundation would like to work with all stakeholders to help curtail this problem.”
Most victims of hit-and-run crashes resulting in death are pedestrians or bicyclists, according to the AAA.
The Association notes also that over the past 10 years, nearly 20 percent of all pedestrian deaths were caused by hit-and-run crashes.
“It is every driver’s legal and moral responsibility to take necessary precautions to avoid hitting a pedestrian, bicyclist, or another vehicle,” said Jennifer Ryan, director of state relations for AAA. “While no one likes being involved in a crash, leaving the scene will significantly increase the penalties for drivers—whether they caused the crash or not.”
It is illegal in every state for a driver involved in a crash to flee the scene.
Penalties include large fines, loss of license, or prison sentences.
The Epoch Times reporter Tom Ozimek contributed to this report.