Cops: 4-year-old dies after stolen SUV slams head-on into his father’s car

A 4-year-old was killed and his father is in critical condition following a crash involving a stolen SUV in southwest Atlanta.
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A 4-year-old was killed and his father is in critical condition following a crash involving a stolen SUV in southwest Atlanta.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

A 4-year-old boy is dead and his father is in critical condition following a head-on crash involving a stolen SUV on Wednesday afternoon in southwest Atlanta, authorities said.

The wreck happened about 4:30 p.m. after police spotted a stolen Honda Pilot near Ralph David Abernathy Boulevard and Metropolitan Parkway, Atlanta police spokesman Officer Steve Avery said. The vehicle was occupied by six people and had been reported stolen out of DeKalb County.

The SUV, which was driven by a 15-year-old, took off after noticing the officers, authorities said. A short time later, the vehicle collided head-on with a Lexus occupied by a father and his son.

They were rushed to the hospital, but the child later died of his injuries. The boy was identified Thursday as Demarcus Grier by the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office.

Family members at the scene told Channel 2 Action News that the father and son lived only a few blocks away and were heading back to their house.

Four of the people inside the SUV ran away following the crash, authorities said. The 15-year-old driver and a 17-year-old passenger were detained at the scene.

The 17-year-old, identified as Demarcus Laney, was charged with possession of a firearm by a person under 18 and released on a citation. The 15-year-old driver was charged with theft by receiving stolen property and released to a parent, according to police.

The crash remains under investigation and additional charges are pending following the child’s death. Avery said it doesn’t appear there was a police chase before the crash, but that the teen driver sped away in the stolen SUV after seeing the officers.

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