UPDATE: Tuesday, July 9, 2013
Police are now looking for a specific model of car involved in a crash that killed a man and injured a child who were riding a horse late last week.
After analysis of debris left behind, officers are looking for a 2003 to 2005 Mercury Grand Marquis that is metallic gray in color. It would have extensive front end and windshield damage. It would look similar to the car pictured above.
Anyone with information is asked to call police.
The child who was injured is still in the ICU, but we're told his condition has improved. The two others who were hurt trying to assist after the first accident have been treated and released.
UPDATE: Monday, July 8, 2013
Police are still searching for the driver involved in a fatal hit and run crash involving a horse that happened late Friday night.
Just before 11 p.m. Friday, a man and a young child on a horse were crossing 21st Street North from Piatt when they were hit by a car. Police say the horse was hit in the back leg and may have landed on the windshield of the car, which quickly drove away following the crash.
A 17-year-old girl who was walking nearby, and a 43-year-old driver both stopped to help the man and child who were laying in the middle of 21st Street. The 17-year-old was on the phone with 911 when all four were people were hit by another car driven by a 62-year-old woman, who didn't see them in time. That driver stopped after the accident.
The man riding the horse, 49-year-old Lloyd "Sonny" Ferguson, was pronounced dead at the scene. The six-year-old who was also on the horse suffered serious injuries and is currently listed in critical but stable condition at a Wichita hospital. The two others who were hit by the second car are in serious condition. The horse suffered serious injuries and had to be put down.
Police say it was very dark in the area where the crashes occurred, as street lights were not functioning due to a recent storm. They also said it's legal to ride a horse on city streets as long as the horse has reflective gear, but there was none on this horse.
Police are looking for a metallic gray sedan with extensive front end and windshield damage. Anyone with information on a car matching that description is asked to call police at (316) 268-4131.
Saturday, July 6, 2013
A man in his 40s and a horse are dead and a child has serious injuries after they were hit by two vehicles Friday night in north Wichita.
It happened just before 11 p.m. near East 21st Street North and Piatt.
Police said the man, the 6-year-old child and the horse were crossing 21st Street when they were hit by an eastbound car. That vehicle then left the scene. It wasn't immediately known if the victims were walking or riding the horse.
Two witnesses ran out in the street to help the victims when another eastbound vehicle reportedly didn't see the group and hit them. That driver did stop.
Police said the man died at the scene, and the child was transported to the hospital in very serious condition. At last update, he was undergoing surgery. The horse was humanely euthanized.
The two witnesses, a man and a 17-year-old girl, were taken to a local hospital with minor injuries.
The man's name is being withheld pending confirmation that all family members have been notified and that releasing his name will not hinder the investigation.
But family and friends of the man killed spoke out Saturday saying he was "full of life and always smiling."
"Hurt, shock, disbelief," family member Patience Smith said.
"Numb. There are just no other words," said Pebbles Whittaker, the man's ex-wife.
According to numerous people who spoke to KAKE News Saturday, the man was well-known and well-respected in the community.
They say he brought joy to neighborhood kids with his horses.
"He would like to just take them for rides and let them pet (the horses)," Smith said. "He was just real friendly."
Smith placed flowers near the scene Saturday in his honor.
"When you lose somebody, a family member, you have so much history. It just hurts," Smith said. "I hope he didn't suffer."
Community members say everyone is hurting in the wake of the loss. Each person had a story of how the man had touched their life.
"He was just like a son to me. He would always come and see about me," friend Leroy Turner said. "I will really miss him. I love him."
Police continue to search for the first car that fled the scene. It was described only as a silver-colored vehicle with front end damage. Anyone with information is asked to call 911.