Friends of an Archbishop Mitty High School freshman wore wear white to school and held a prayer vigil Thursday for a 14-year-old classmate hit by a car, after police say he darted out into the street behind an oncoming car.
The freshman, whom NBC Bay Area is not naming as his family has not given consent, was struck at 3:23 p.m. Thursday on Mitty Road in West San Jose and was taken to Valley Medical Center, where his principal said he was in a coma.
Police say he was running eastbound on the sidewalk, when he darted out into the street behind a silver Ford Focus also traveling eastbound, and was hit by a car traveling westbound. Police have interviewed witnesses, but don't know why he ran out into the street.
"Any time you have someone that is hit in such a manner and is so easy to avoid," said San Jose police traffic investigations unit supervisor John Carr. "There's a cross walk that was right there that could have been utilized but wasn't."
Investigators have not charged or cited the driver of the car, described as a woman in her early 20s. They don't believe alcohol or drugs were a factor.
Mitty High Principal Tim Brosnan describes the teen as a “bright, fun and athletic” freshman, and said the boy was struck on his way either “to or from basketball practice.” The woman driving the car was not connected in any way to the school, Brosnan said.
At school on Thursday morning, the 1,800 Mitty students prayed for the boy, a graduate of Hillbrook Elementary, to recover. “It was a powerful experience,” Brosnan said. “To gather in solidarity. Kids were upset. They’re concerned about their friend. There were a lot of tears. And some amazingly quiet times. I think it was healing for the community and helpful for the family.”
He said the counselors are being provided at the school for students and the doors of the chapel are open. “Every minute of the day,” Brosnan said students are walking in to pray.
Police have not identified the teen, but his friends have turned to social media with the hashtag, #PrayForLoukas.