The brother of a 13-year-old Aurora boy who was seriously injured by a hit-and-run driver says he was stunned anyone could be so "coldhearted."
"I'm shocked anybody would hit a kid and leave him in the street like that," Angel Romero, 15, said Thursday.
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Angel said he and his brother, Joshua, were riding their bicycles to a friend's house Wednesday when he heard a loud crash and then his brother cry out.
"He was lying there, bleeding," Angel said. "He was just crying, calling my name. It was real sad, and the person who hit him doesn't care at all. She took off."
Authorities said the crash happened about 5 p.m. on Talma Street at Fifth Avenue on Aurora's near southeast side. Witnesses described the vehicle that struck Joshua as a dark-colored, newer model Nissan Pathfinder with a luggage rack on top.
The eastbound vehicle slowed after the accident but then continued on Fifth to northbound Jackson Street, police said. Witnesses told police the driver was a Hispanic woman with long, dark hair who appeared to be in her early 30s.
The victim, an eighth-grader at Waldo Middle School in Aurora, was taken by ambulance to Rush-Copley Medical Center and then flown to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, where he was being treated for serious injuries.
On Thursday, the teen wrote on Facebook he was "still good," despite head trauma, cuts on his face and fractures to his left wrist, collarbone and right leg. His brother said Joshua could be sent home soon.
"He's a little soldier, and he's doing good," Angel said. "He told me just to smile feels good."
Aurora Area Crime Stoppers is offering a $5,000 cash reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.
Angel, a sophomore at East Aurora High School, said he's confident police will find the driver.
"I trust they're going to fight for my brother," he said.
Joshua has three brothers and three sisters, Angel said. He said his mother was in the hospital at his brother's bedside.
"I just can't believe anybody's that coldhearted to do something like this," he said. "I'm speechless."
Aurora police spokesman Dan Ferrelli said investigators received numerous phone calls about the accident as of Thursday afternoon and the investigation was ongoing.
To report information, call Crime Stoppers at (630) 892-1000 or Aurora police investigations at (630) 256-5330. Crime Stoppers callers may remain anonymous.