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ABC7 Exclusive: Hit-and-run victim speaks

August 7, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
The young victim of a hit-and-run accident speaks out from her hospital bed after she and her mother were struck down by a speeding car in a dangerous Studio City intersection. Demands for new safety measures at the intersection of Tujunga Avenue and Woodbridge Street in Studio City continue to grow. The good news in all of this is that the young girl and her mother are going to be OK. They'll have to spend a few more days in the hospital. They are going to recover from this hit-and-run accident that was very traumatic for the 10-year-old.

Ten-year-old Aiyana's cast is quickly filling up with signatures.

"When it was in the soft cast, which was before the hard cast, it really hurt," said Aiyana. "But now it feels a lot better."

But the 5th grader is still feeling the pain from the broken leg and fractured pelvis she suffered after someone ran her and her mom down as they were crossing Tujunga Avenue Sunday night.

"We were going on the pedestrian crosswalk, so we just walked across like normal people," said Aiyana.

Aiyana can't remember much about the accident, but the surveillance camera positioned atop of Vitello's Italian Restaurant captured the whole thing. The suspect's sedan is visible in the upper right of the screen of the video.

"I just remember this dark image of a white car, like stopped. I didn't see anything else," said Aiyana.

Aiyana regained consciousness in the ambulance. She told Eyewitness News that she tried to be very brave as paramedics worked on her badly broken leg.

"I was calm, but I wanted to cry. When they moved my leg up, it started to really hurt," said Aiyana.

Aiyana was rushed to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She didn't need surgery, but her mother did.

As they both recover Thursday, it's starting to sink in exactly what happened in an instant.

"It does make me angry because also we had our dogs with us, so they also hit the dogs," said Aiyana.

And one of those dogs, a Maltese puppy named "Zoey" was killed in that crosswalk.

"I try not to cry now," said Aiyana. "Sometimes it makes me want to cry, 'cause she's my dog, and she was like the best thing that every happened to me," said Aiyana.

Aiyana says she can't wait to get home from the hospital and cuddle with her other dog, the one that did survive the hit and run.

Investigating officers from Valley Traffic want to see that happen too, along with something else.

"Somebody knows who did this," said LAPD Valley Traffic Officer Rhiannon Talley. "Either the person is watching at this moment -- they need to give us a call, they need to do the right thing.

LAPD Valley Traffic Division can be reached at (818) 644-8000.

Investigators believe they are dealing with a silver sedan, and they only have a partial plate.

The mother in the accident did have to undergo surgery. Her family said she's the one who took the brunt of the impact.

 

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