11-year-old hit, killed by deputy in Battle Creek

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. — A boy is dead after a collision with a sheriff's deputy in Calhoun County.

It happened Tuesday night just after 9:30 p.m. near the intersection of Michigan Avenue and Lenon Street in Battle Creek.

The Calhoun County Sheriff's Office says it was responding to reports of a burglary in progress in Springfield when one of its deputies collided with a 11-year-old boy riding a motorized bike.

Sheriff Matt Saxton said Wednesday morning that the deputy's patrol car was responding to the burglary call without its lights and sirens on. The motorized bike was described as a "pocket bike" and also did not have lights and is not made for the road.

The boy was taken to Bronson Hospital in Kalamazoo where he died from his injuries. He was a student in a Battle Creek Public School and the district was notified of his death and have had counselors available for classmates.

On Wednesday, the boy's mother said in a Facebook post that her son Norm died in the crash.

The deputy has been with the Calhoun County Sheriff's Department for about five years. Before joining the department, he was an officer in Springfield, Michigan for 18 years. He was a Springfield officer that transitioned to the sheriff's department when the sheriff's department took over patrol duties in Springfield.

The identities of the boy and the deputy have not been released. Saxton says he has been in contact with the boy's parents and the department "grieves with them."

Michigan State Police is now investigating the incident.

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5 comments

  • Tracy Donaldson

    may This young man RIP after a terrible accident.That is what this was just a terrible accident.Also why are the media Stations trying to make it bigger then it is Just because it was an Officer headed to a call.Not every call calls for Sirens and lights to be on.But 1 Question I have that I have not yet heard from any reporter.Why was this 11 year old out on the streets at that time of the Night? Is he not breaking curfew laws State Law MCL 722.751 states Children under 12 be off the streets by 10.pm .I am not blaming anyone but it seems any time a Officer is involved in something all of a sudden their are different standards for them.Lets not forget they are the same as the rest of us except for the uniform So please lets just reeber it isan accident.

    • Linda Bouffard

      Norman was riding a pocket bike on a public road that apparently was not street legal. There are questions that will and will never be answered. My question: Why villify the officer for not using lights and siren? He wasn’t driving without headlights. This child, at 11 years of age was thought to be a responsible pocket bike rider. Tragedies happen, accidents are called accidents for a reason. He was not targeted for harm. Our hearts are broken for the familes involved in this incident. Please, let’s not compound this tragedy by declaring the officer guilty for doing his job.

  • Sue Crawford

    What a tragic loss. Yes indeed the officer will have to live with this the rest of his life. This bots family will have to live without him. My condolences for the family.

    To me, it would have been better to travel and safe speeds regardless. Don’t put more life’s in jeopardy.

    Years ago a friend of mine lost her son. He was hit by a police officer flying west on Territorial road going to a purse snatching or similar at the Columbia plaza. A life lost forever, a dad, husband and son.

    The difference between driving a safe reasonable speed or an excessive speed is just a minute or so. Slow down and think about that.

    • Michael

      I’m not sure there’s enough information available yet to say speed had anything to do with it. I haven’t heard anything saying the deputy did anything wrong.

      The only thing for certain from the article and press release was that the child was illegally operating a vehicle on the roadway without any lights. (Pocket bikes aren’t road legal)

      Other than that we will have to wait for the full investigation. The deputy may have been driving recklessly or he may have been driving responsibly.

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