Lights & Sirens

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4-year-old boy behind the wheel when car crashes into Tacoma store

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on Feb. 12, 2009 at 11:35 am |
February 12, 2009 11:35 am

A 4-year-old boy took the ride of his young life this morning when he managed to put a parked car into neutral and it rolled across South 38th Street and into a store.

Tacoma police were reviewing how the boy got out of his car seat and how he got the vehicle – which was parked with the engine off – moving.

The boy, his mother and her boyfriend pulled into a check cashing store on South 38th Street just after 9 a.m. today, police spokesman Mark Fulghum said.

The two adults went inside the building and left the boy buckled into his car seat in the back seat.

The mother told police she was keeping an eye on the car. She had the car keys in her hands.

“The next thing, she turned around and the car was gone,” Fulghum said.

Officers say the boy managed to get out of his car seat, climbed into the front seat and put the older model car into neutral.

It backed out of the check cashing parking lot and went onto South 38th Street. The boy sharply turned the wheel and backed into the driveway of a strip mall adjacent to the check cashing store.

The car smacked into the CompuCare store, causing some damage to the store, its contents and the car.

No one was injured.

While the car was smashed up, the adults were able to drive it away, Fulghum said.

Officers were still reviewing the matter. No citations were immediately issued.

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