The mother of a 3-year-old boy who died after being struck by a vehicle late Monday night says she doesn't hold a grudge against the driver but wants to know what happened.
Jayden Thiel was struck while he was in the roadway on U.S. Highway 78 in the area of Reevesville near St. George at approximately 11:30 p.m., Berkeley County Coroner Paul Brouthers said. The child was pronounced dead at the scene, he said.
South Carolina Highway Patrol Lance Cpl. David Jones said an unknown vehicle was traveling on Highway 78 near Meadows Run when it struck the child. The boy was alone at the time of the crash, Sgt. Bob Beres said.
The vehicle then left the scene, Jones said.
Michelle Hayden, who lives near the scene, says when she saw what happened, she just wanted to be there for the parent.
"When I did walk out here, I just heard the momma crying, 'He's dead, he's dead. He's my baby, he's dead.' And my heart just broke for this lady," Hayden said. "I wanted to go up to her and wrap my arms around her."
The SCHP Multidisciplinary Accident Investigation Team and the Dorchester County Coroner's Office is investigating.
"Somebody needs to pay for this," Hayden said. "This is an innocent 3-year-old baby. And this family, my heart goes out to this family. "
Anyone with information on the incident should call the South Carolina Highway Patrol at 843-953-6010 or 1-800-768-1506; or Crimestoppers at 888-CRIME-SC.