Student hit by driver in same crosswalk where 12-year-old was killed

A student was hit while crossing the street on a bicycle at Cleveland Middle School. 

It happened at the same crosswalk where a 12-year-old was killed in March.

After her death, Albuquerque installed a state of the art crosswalk to try and prevent anymore tragedies. It cost the city $300,000 to make the HAWK signal crosswalk in front of the school, but concerned parents say drivers still aren’t paying enough attention.  

“I have a hard time still believing that she’s gone,” said Jennie Aguirre. 

Back in March, Jennie Aguirre’s 12-year-old daughter, Eliza, was hit and killed on Louisiana near Cleveland Middle School when a driver didn’t see her in the crosswalk. 

Mayor Tim Keller called it a tragedy that never should have happened. 

“This is something I wish we would have looked at a long time ago and now that I’m mayor I want to make sure we get it right this time,” Keller said.

Back in August, the city installed a $300,000 HAWK signal in an effort to make the crosswalk safer.

But Tuesday, Cleveland Middle School sent out a letter to parents saying a student had been hit in the  same crosswalk while riding his bike.

“Just knowing another kid got hit it’s…there’s no words for it,” Aguirre said.  

Albuquerque Police say the driver stopped at the flashing signal, then continued through the crosswalk when it was clear. 

According to police, that’s when the boy rode into the crosswalk and was hit. Police say bicyclists are supposed to walk their bikes across the street, not ride them.

“How can you compare the responsibility of a child to the responsibility of an adult? These children are coming out of elementary,” Aguirre said.

Aguirre has a son that goes to the middle school, and she says even with the HAWK sign she’s seen and filmed plenty of speeding drivers. 

“You have to respect school zones, that’s all I’m asking. We’re here to protect our children,” Aguirre said. 

Her family hopes Monday’s accident will prompt the city to do more to keep kids safe.

“Keep the kids from crossing until all cars are stopped…I think it’s going to be a crossing guard that makes the difference,” Aguirre said. 

KRQE News 13 asked Albuquerque Public Schools if students were trained on the rules of the crosswalk, but our calls weren’t returned. 

Police say the driver was not cited. 

APS says the boy is recovering from his injuries.

The Albuquerque mayor’s office issued the following statement Tuesday afternoon:

“Anytime there’s an accident involving a child, it’s devastating. Part of preventing accidents like this is to ensure everyone shares the road and that we’re all being aware of our surroundings. At this specific intersection we installed a HAWK signal in record time before the start of school in August, and we’re continuing to work on improvements to intersections near schools across the city,” – Alicia Manzano, Communications Director for Mayor Keller. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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