Page last updated at 18:10 GMT, Wednesday, 7 January 2009

US boy takes car in school dash

By Rajini Vaidyanathan
BBC News, Washington


Police say the boy was in a hurry to get to school

The parents of a six-year-old boy in the US have been charged with neglect after the boy drove their car for 10km in an attempt to get to school on time.

Police in Virginia said the boy, who was not named, took the keys to the car after he missed the school bus.

He drove for six miles (10km) on major roads, weaving through traffic and overtaking slower cars, before losing control and going off the road.

The boy told police he learned to drive by playing video games.

Protective custody

Police said the boy was so intent on getting to school after failing to make the bus, that he got the keys to his father's Ford Taurus and took the wheel himself.

"When he got out of the car, he started walking to school. He did not want to miss breakfast and PE," said Northumberland County Sheriff Chuck Wilkins.

His road trip came to an end only after he ran off the road several times before hitting an embankment and utility pole. He was not, police said, wearing a seat belt.

He was treated for minor injuries at a hospital before police took him to school.

It happened at 0740 on Monday, while the boy's mother was still asleep.

Both of his parents have been charged with endangering their child. He and his four-year-old brother are now in protective custody.

Print Sponsor

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific