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Video shows minivan driver targeting fleeing kids in Las Vegas

Startling video shows a woman driving a minivan at fleeing youths in a desert lot in south Las Vegas on Friday afternoon during a melee that injured four kids.

Las Vegas police said they were searching for the driver of the van that fled a shopping complex parking lot near Maryland Parkway and Silverado Ranch Boulevard. The episode happened at 2:20 p.m., just after school let out at nearby Silvestri Junior High School.

Las Vegas police spokesman Larry Hadfield said “there was some sort of altercation or fight” in an alley at South Jack Leavitt Street and East LeBaron Avenue to the rear of an Albertsons. A woman was involved in the altercation and, as she was driving away, her vehicle struck the four youths, Hadfield said.

“It was absolutely intentional,” said witness Katie Duda. “It was intense. Some kids were jumping on her hood to avoid being hit. It was overwhelming … just crazy.”

Duda said she has two children who attend Silvestri. She was there to pick up her kids when two boys were involved in an altercation. The driver of the minivan, Duda said, is the mother of one of the children involved in the altercation. The woman ended up punching a boy in the face who had nothing to do with the initial confrontation, Duda said. The woman then hopped in her van and clipped the youths while repeatedly backing the van up, moving it forward, and then speeding toward the boy as he ran through the parking lot.

“The saddest part was her son was in the front seat, saying, ‘Go mom! Go get him! My mom’s going to run you over you better move,’” Duda said. “She was literally doing doughnuts trying to hit these kids.”

Police provided no update Saturday on the search for the driver.

Ron and Sherry Lawrence said Friday afternoon that their 14-year-old granddaughter was one of the kids struck. The girl suffered bruises to her leg. They said she and other witnesses told them a similar account — that a woman got into a fistfight with a boy in the alley shortly after a group of kids were let out of Silvestri. The woman then jumped in her vehicle and fled the scene when the youths were struck.

“She punched the kid in the face, got back in her car and ran over four other children, and left the scene,” Ron Lawrence said.

Police described the kids’ injuries as superficial. Duda said the entire event was shocking. She said she has repeatedly spoken to teachers and a vice principal at Silvestri about her concerns about fights and kids acting out. She said the school is having trouble with unruly behavior by some students.

“I am keeping my kids home for sure on Monday until I understand what the plan is,” Duda said.

Contact Glenn Puit by email at gpuit@reviewjournal.com. Follow @GlennatRJ on Twitter.

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