7-year-old boy riding horse hit and killed by car

HSCO: Boy not expected to survive

HOUSTON - A 7-year-old boy has died from injuries sustained when a car hit him while he was riding a pony in northwest Harris County.

Deputies said the boy was thrown from the pony after he crossed a roadway and the pony was struck by a vehicle.

The accident happened at around 10 p.m. Friday near the intersection of Spears Road and Walter Road. According to deputies, the boy was riding a pony with a group of other riders along Spears when the boy crossed the roadway and was hit by an SUV that was heading westbound.

"When he crossed the road, he crossed the road in front of her, into her path. She slammed on her brakes, trying to avoid a collision but was unable to avoid colliding with the horse," said Sergeant S. Wolverton with the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

Wolverton said the child was first taken to Houston Northwest Medical Center and then flown by LifeFlight to Memorial Hermann Hospital. On Monday, Local 2 learned the boy died from his injuries.

According to investigators, the driver of the SUV drove to her home about a mile away and called 9-1-1. Wolverton said she told deputies she didn't realize there had been a child riding the horse. "We did check her out, she's showing no signs of impairment. At this time we're not expecting any charges against her since she did call 9-1-1 within a short period after the accident," said Wolverton.

People who live in the area said it is fairly common to see people riding horses along Spears Road, but not at night.

Susan Van Vliet lives next to the stable on Spears and said she had seen a little boy riding a pony with family members in the past. Van Vliet said she saw a group of riders leaving the stable Friday evening and quickly moved her dogs inside, fearing they would spook the animals.

"I was already worried because of how late they were going out. It was 8:30... it was already dark. I thought, 'Why would they go out at this hour?" said Van Vliet.

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