‘He was robbed of his life. It was a very bad decision on their part,’ says Leden Boykins’s mother
A 12-year-old boy was killed during a car crash involving a Georgia state trooper, according to reports.
Leden Boykins, 12, died after the car he was in flipped during a car chase with on the highway with the Georgia State Troopers. The driver was a family friend of Leden, named as Charles Moore.
It is believed that the state trooper deployed a Pursuit Immobilization Technique manoeuvre to put a halt to the chase. This when a police vehicle deliberately hits another vehicle to make the driver lose control and spin out.
Leden’s mother, Toni Franklin-Boykins said that the tactic should never have been used because children, such as Leden, were in the car. Mr Moore’s 14-year-old son was also in the car and survived.
“He was robbed of his life. It was a very bad decision on their part,” she told NBC News. “They could have called that off.”
Leden was in the seventh grade and turning 13 at the end of the month.
Ms Franklin-Boykins also said that Mr Moore was scared by the number of police, a fear she attributed to being a Black man.
“He told the 911 operator, he said, ‘I need for y’all to get a supervisor out here, there’s too many police cars and I’m in fear of my life,’” she told WXIA.
Leden’s father Anthony Boykins told the same outlet:“They could put a roadblock up and protect those kids. They couldn’t figure out any other way than to flip that car over?”
According to the Georgia State Patrol, Mr Moore, 35, was stopped by authorities for speeding at approximately 1am on 10 September.
They told NBC News that Mr Moore would not “lower his driver window or produce any kind of identification” so the trooper, who was not named by the agency, requested help. Officers from the Paulding County’s Office came to the scene.
A deputy from the sheriff’s office is said to have smashed the window. Following this, Mr Moore drove away.
The Georgia State Patrol told NBC News that “the pursuit continued” which they said was “at a high rate of speed and the driver was driving recklessly.”
After they did the PIT manoeuvre, Mr Moore’s car “exited the roadway and overturned into a ditch.”
They said that the Leden “was unrestrained and suffered fatal injuries” and that Mr Moore and his unnamed son were given medical attention for minor injuries
The state authorities also revealed that the Georgia Department of Public Safety’s Office of Professional Standard is carrying out an internal investigation.
Mr Moore has been charged in connection to the incident. These include murder during the commission of a felony, first degree homicide by vehicle and aggravated assault against a police officer.
In addition, he was charged with DUI, having an open container in a motor vehicle and driving on a suspended licence. According to NBC News, he was still in custody on 13 September.
Leden’s parents told WXIA that they had not been contacted about their son’s death. They said they were at a funeral in Michigan at the time. In response, Lindsey Eberhart Fuller, the Paulding County Coroner said this was untrue.