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Wichita police: Dad thought toddler was with older children just before fatal accident

Wichita police on Friday provided additional information about an accident Thursday evening in which an 18-month-old boy died after being run over by a pickup in front of a home in the 1700 block of South Santa Fe.

A preliminary investigation indicates that the toddler was among a group of six people, including four children and the boy’s father, who had just been dropped off at a home near Harry and Washington by a man driving a full-size pickup. The father apparently thought the youngest children were with the oldest children after they got out of the pickup, police Lt. Joe Schroeder said. The father witnessed the accident. The driver, a family friend, didn’t see the child as he drove away, and the truck ran over the boy.

“There’s no indication of alcohol, no indication of reckless behavior,” Schroeder said. “At this point, it just appears that it’s a tragic accident.”

Still, as part of the standard procedure in such incidents, blood was drawn from the driver, and the investigation will be reviewed by the district attorney’s office, Schroeder said.

Schroeder said Friday afternoon that he couldn’t give the child’s name because it’s not clear whether all relatives have been notified. The boy’s mother was out of state when the accident happened.

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