The mum of the three-year-old boy who died following a hit-and-run in Melbourne’s west yelled at the toddler to stop just moments before the fatal crash, a witness claims.
The boy, Ethan Nguyen, ran onto McIntyre Rd in Sunshine North after breaking away from his mum, who was picking him up from daycare at about 6.30pm on Thursday, police believe.
A witness said the woman screamed for her son to stop.
"She said 'Ethan, stop!' and then he listen and stop but the car not stop," they told Nine News.
Another witness told the publication a local business owner had also yelled for Ethan to stop.
"My business owner he say 'stop, stop, stop', he see the boy when he cross the road and cause little boy he not understand, that's why," Saad Alyoshik said.
The toddler was hit by a red sedan and dragged up to 30 metres, police said.
He was rushed to Royal Children’s Hospital in critical condition but tragically died later that night.
Elderly driver released by police
A 73-year-old woman who handed herself in to police after the fatal crash has been released.
The woman was arrested on Friday morning and interviewed by detectives before being released pending further inquiries, police said in a statement.
Her vehicle, which sustained damage to the front right hand side of the car, will also undergo forensic testing.
"Having a quick look at the vehicle, it’s pretty evident that you would know that you’ve hit something," Superintendent John Fitzpatrick said.
"Whether that driver knew they hit a child, or something else, is still to be determined."
The investigation into the collision is ongoing.
Family members weep at the scene
Ethan’s heartbroken family members were seen crying on Friday as they gathered to lay tributes.
They placed a photo of the little boy on a nearby tree and scattered flowers and cups of his favourite tea on the ground.
“Why car can’t stop? I don’t know,” his distraught grandmother told Nine News cameras.
Police have asked anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers.
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