Young child struck by Phoenix Police cruiser, department calls incident 'heartbreaking' and 'tragic'

A young child remains hospitalized in critical condition after they were hit by a Phoenix Police cruiser on Wednesday night, the department says.

The incident happened in a neighborhood near 11th Avenue and Pima Street around 6 p.m. on June 7. The child is in critical condition, Sgt. Brian Bower said.

Family members told FOX 10 that the child is a 2-year-old boy.

Bower detailed the incident during a press conference, saying an officer was in a marked 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe police cruiser along with a police assistant.

As the two finished a call and were driving northbound on 11th Avenue, they saw a young girl in the front yard of a home appearing to wave at them.

That's when Bower says the officer struck another child in the roadway. The girl who was waving would later tell detectives she was trying to let them know that the child was in the street.

"The officer driving stopped the vehicle upon colliding with the young child and began to provide care to the child," said Sgt. Bower.

The officers were not actively on a call, Bower says, but they had just finished responding to a call. 

Speed is not being considered as a factor in the crash.

Information about the victim wasn't given, only that the child is very young.

"Details of this incident remain part of an ongoing investigation as well as an administrative investigation," Bower said.

Image 1 of 2


Neighbors react to tragedy

"The child was not moving, and the child was stuck under the car," said Trevion Samuel. "When the cop pulled the car back, the child was under there."

Neighbors say they often see several children playing in front of the home where the toddler lives, but they never imagined a police vehicle, not a train, or speeding car, would crash into a resident on this street.

"I wish whoever hit the child, there should be consequences," Samuel said.

Vehicular crimes detectives with Phoenix Police are investigating the collision, and the entire community is rallying for the 2-year-old boy to pull through.

"People need to watch their kids and pay good attention to your kids," Samuel said. "Phoenix PD, they need to pay attention."

Map of where the incident happened: