PD: Toddler Run Over By Family Vehicle in Salem, New Hampshire

Neighbors on South Policy Street say mother let daughter start car on more than one occasion

A 2-year-old is recovering in Salem, New Hampshire, after police say her legs were run over by the family vehicle on Tuesday.

The incident happened around 6:30 p.m. in a driveway on South Policy Street after police say the girl's 7-year-old sister put the vehicle into reverse.

Salem Police Sergeant Joseph Keating said the mother had given the older girl permission to start the car.

"The 7-year-old was able to start the vehicle, put it in reverse, and accidentally backed up over the two year old," said Keating.

Their mother, who was not outside at the time, ran outside when she heard yelling.

The girl sustained injuries to her legs, chin, scalp and ribs.

She was taken to an area hospital and was ultimately airlifted to a Boston hospital.

Police said the accident could have been even worse.

"There's a lot of mobile homes in that area, a lot of propane tanks and gas tanks are situated right outside these homes," Keating said. "Some of them are unprotected so absolutely there could have been more damage, more injury."

Neighbor Jason Dumont said his mother's home could have been hit.

"My kids could have been out here. I could have been out here," said Dumont. "It's kind of scary."

Police said this was not the first time the mother has asked her daughter to start the car.

"Some of the neighbors on scene reported to officers, that they had observed the 7 year old starting the vehicle in the past," Keating said. "She was seen in the vehicle alone, unattended, and the mother admitted to officers on scene that she had asked the daughter on numerous occasions to start the vehicle."

The incident is under investigation but police said the mother, who has not been identified, could face charges.

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