Local News

Driver sought after hit-and-run that kills 13-year-old boy

Posted September 23, 2014

— The parents of a 13-year-old Wendell boy killed Tuesday morning while waiting for the school bus want the driver who hit their son and then drove off to come forward to take responsibility.

The North Carolina State Highway Patrol said Keith Jones Jr., of 2512 Edgemont Road, was waiting in the driveway of his home around 7 a.m. when, they believe, someone driving a burgundy late-1980s or early-1990s Ford Crown Victoria hit the teen.

Investigators found numerous car parts, including Ford emblems, and they believe the car likely had damage to its right headlight area and could have other front-end damage as well.

"I could not live with something like that if I hit a child," Keith Jones Sr. said. "I will hope and I will pray, and I would like for him or her to come forward. We want to know what happened."

The boy's mother, Marie Jones, found him lying on the side of the road after noticing his book bag on the ground and him nowhere to be found.

"I picked up his book bag," she said. "It was somewhat damaged like it had been ripped off of him. That's when I knew something was not right."

She found him in a nearby ditch and tried to give him CPR.

"To know that he had been hit and hurt and lying in a ditch, that was the hard part," Marie Jones said. "Trying to save his life was easy."

Keith Jones Jr. was a student at Wendell Middle School, his parents said. He played football with a local youth league and also loved basketball.

"I don't want to lose his memory," Keith Jones Sr. said. "He was a good kid, had a good heart."

Neighbors were also shocked and saddened by the boy's death.

"I'm honestly kind of speechless right now," said Heather Preslar. "Finding him that way and knowing that whoever hit him just drove off – to me, that's somebody with no conscience."

Investigators are asking that anyone with information about the case to call the Highway Patrol, at 919-733-3861, or local authorities.

The Joneses are praying someone will.

"Please come forward and share any information that you have to hold this person accountable," Marie Jones said. "It's the right thing to do, because it's easy. As it happened to me, it could happen to you. I'm not trying to be angry, but it's hurting."


This story is closed for comments.

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  • Kim Stew Sep 23, 2014
    user avatar

    My heart aches for this child and his family. God Bless.

  • marimom Sep 23, 2014

    Extremely sad!!!!! Why does this have to happen? Somebody has information and they need to come forward. Living in this area for over 10+ years you must know who it can be! Please come forward! It was an innocent child going to school!

  • BBall Mom76 Sep 23, 2014

    Thoughts are with the family. I always drive slow through neighborhoods with kids at bus stops. I drive pass children at bus stops everyday and as I am doing the speed limit, people are riding my tail wanting me to go faster. Same thing when I'm in the school zone. Police need to crack down on these crazy drivers.

  • Tug Boat II Sep 23, 2014

    Thank goodness the driver turned him/her self in. Prayers for the family of the young man.

  • hollylama Sep 23, 2014

    Iluvjunk....May you find comfort. Ill graciously leave it at that.

  • wizakid Sep 23, 2014

    Very sad. Prayers for peace and comfort for the family as they deal with this unimaginable situation.

  • North Carolina Cutie Sep 23, 2014

    My heart goes out to this family and prayers, I pray everyday for God to keep our little ones safe waiting on the school buses. Some of them have too get out there so early and it's still dark. If this person does not come fort they will not be able too sleep at night.

  • Lamborghini Mercy Sep 23, 2014

    View quoted thread

    Agreed, however a rational LAW abiding citizen would have stopped, called 911, and tried to help the boy after hitting him. Based on the drivers unlawful actions, i'm not giving the driver any benefit of the doubt that it was an accident.

  • trianglerelic Sep 23, 2014

    Very sad, especially if the child was in his driveway.
    I personally see children waiting for the bus while standing, and often playing in the street. With sunrise coming later, this can be extremely dangerous. Kids don't understand that they aren't easy to see from a moving vehicle. Parents should make every effort to teach their kids to stay off the roadway.

  • Tracy Corwin Sep 23, 2014
    user avatar

    Please people it does not appear that the victim was in the road. There are no sidewalks as the video clearly showed. He was apparently standing at the end of his driveway. Many of you actually sound like you are trying to lay blame on the victim.