A 15-year-old boy was hospitalized in critical condition after he was shoved in front of a car that hit him near a Hemet intersection.
The victim, identified as Angel Hernandez by family members, was injured at about 4:25 p.m. Monday on Stetson Avenue, near Seven Hills Drive, according to the Hemet Police Department. The boy's father, Miguel Hernandez, told Telemundo52 that the boy suffered a broken jaw and other head injuries.
"He hasn't woken up," Hernandez said. "We are, just now, praying for him and we hope he can wake up soon."
Lt. Nathan Miller said the teenager was riding his skateboard eastbound when he encountered "a group of young people," who initiated a confrontation. Angel's father said it appears there was a verbal exchange and that the group wanted his son's skateboard.
"A brief altercation ensued, resulting in the 15-year-old being pushed into traffic lanes," Miller said. "About that time, a Tesla being driven by a 52-year-old man … struck the teen, resulting in significant injuries."
The driver immediately stopped and called 911, according to the lieutenant. He said the assailants grabbed the victim's skateboard and ran away.
The teen was taken to a regional hospital for treatment of major injuries, but he's expected to survive, Miller said.
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The Tesla driver was questioned and determined not to be at fault in any way, the police spokesman said. The car's windshield was shattered.
"Hemet PD detectives are working on identifying the suspects and their exact involvement in this seemingly senseless incident," Miller said.
No descriptions were available, and the number of suspects involved was unclear.
Anyone who may have information, or who was driving through the area with dashboard cameras in operation at the time, was urged to contact detectives at 951-765-2396.