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Teen charged in Wake wreck that injured 11-year-old

Posted September 30, 2014

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— A 16-year-old girl was charged Tuesday after she hit an 11-year-old boy with her car in southern Wake County, State Highway Patrol officials said.

Lindsey Tight was charged with failure to reduce speed and passing a stopped school bus.

A school bus was stopped on Johnson Pond Road near Oak Park Drive at about 7 a.m. to pick up three students. The bus driver saw an approaching car that wasn't slowing down and began honking the horn frantically, witnesses said. Two of the students looked up, saw the car and stepped back from the road, but Michael Burgess stepped into the road and was hit, they said.

"Me and Bryce looked over and saw the red car was coming really fast, and we're like, 'Michael,' and we're all scared and everything," said Meredith Navarro, one of the students at the bus stop. "The next thing we know, the car is hitting Michael, and he goes up and then he slams down in the ditch."

"You could hear the impact. It was bad," nearby resident Mary Seay said. "You hear Meredith screaming, and you see Michael flying in the air."

Michael, a sixth-grader at West Lake Middle School, was knocked into a roadside ditch.

"I just sat with him and held his hand," Seay said. "He's crying, he's hurting, he's bleeding – there's blood everywhere. I was doing my best to stay together for him until the ambulance got there to help him."

Michael was taken to WakeMed, where he was listed in fair condition.

Tight, who was driving to Middle Creek High School and had her 12-year-old sister in the car, said she didn't see the stopped school bus in the morning fog.

"She's saying she just did not see the lights of the school bus," Sgt. Mike Baker of the Highway Patrol said.

Area residents said they didn't have any trouble seeing the bus coming down the street.

"When the bus driver was all the way down there at the end of the road, we could see her lights on already," Meredith said.

Meredith and the other student at the bus stop stayed home from school because they were too shaken up to go to class.

"I feel for her too," Seay said of Tight. "It's got to be a traumatizing thing. It is for everybody – for her, for the bus driver, for the kids just crying and crying and crying because they haven't seen anything like that before."

Johnson Pond Road was closed until about 9 a.m. as troopers investigated the incident.


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  • Jon Gregory Oct 2, 2014
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    I suspect texting was involved. How can you NOT see the red flashing lights!

  • gregbscis Oct 1, 2014

    I see adult violators as well. Lead by example.

  • georgemewborn Oct 1, 2014

    Throw the book at her. This accident is inexcusable.

  • Nicki Baker Oct 1, 2014
    user avatar

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    I have a licensed 18 yr old driving and a 16 yr old who is still driving on her permit. My 16 yr old is eligible to get her drivers license month. However, her father and I agree that she is NOT ready for her license yet. As a parent, I've seen the outrageous driving of the teens at their school when it is dismissed in the afternoon. It is enough that my 18 yr old will not leave the parking lot until most of the irresponsible drivers have left (its an every day pattern with each driver who drives like a maniac). I'm sorry for both parties involved, and I'm glad that Michael will pull through, but changing the age for a drivers license is not the answer...if we wait until they're 18, or is just a delay of the issue at hand. As parents, we should monitor how our children drive before allowing them to have their license. Once they turn 18, there is nothing we can do about them getting a license, but prior...yes.

  • KermitDFrog Oct 1, 2014

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    Agreed.. on the rare occasion one of my kids run late and I drive her to school. I have people on my rear bumper. They are clearly trying to speed in the school zone.

    Instead of blaming driver's ed or the youth.... maybe we need to take a look a the role models. What are kids learning when mom & dad blaze through the school zone or drive aggressively on the roads? A few weeks of driver's ed does not undo years of observation from the back seat.

  • Kreader7 Oct 1, 2014

    So, the bus driver had enough time to honk her horn....but the teen driver didn't see anything? I know it was an accident, but it's still scary she could have killed this little boy....

  • Brian Hill Oct 1, 2014
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    (g) Any person who willfully violates subsection (a) of this section and strikes any person shall be guilty of a Class I felony and shall pay a minimum fine of one thousand two hundred fifty dollars ($1,250). Any person who willfully violates subsection (a) of this section and strikes any person, resulting in the death of that person, shall be guilty of a Class H felony and shall pay a minimum fine of two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500).

  • Terry Lightfoot Oct 1, 2014
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    Give it a rest Yokel, she's a kid and they make mistakes, you should like a holier than thou crank!

  • miseem Oct 1, 2014

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    Not to mention the civil suit that is sure to follow. Any award may well exceed the insurance this family is carrying, meaning that at least part of the award may come from the driver's family. Of course, in addition to teaching teen drivers to be more careful, I would also advise parents to teach their kids riding school buses to look both ways before crossing the street to or from the bus, even if the red lights are flashing. Those red lights do not provide a corridor like Moses parting the Red Sea, keeping onrushing water (or cars) out.

  • A person Oct 1, 2014

    Someone's insurance just sky-rocketed higher than anyone's insurance has sky-rocketed before. Passing a school bus carries more insurance points than anything except for a DWI