Illinois Family Offers to Fund Legal Expenses of Hit-and-Run Driver Who Critically Injured Son if Offender Owns Up

The family of a 12-year-old boy with autism who was critically injured in a hit-and-run are offering $10,000 to cover the driver's legal expenses if they surrender to police.

Chase Thompson was struck by a car in Deerfield, Illinois, shortly after he managed to get out his family home at around 7 p.m. on Friday night, police said.

CBS Chicago reported that police were called to the scene after someone reported that there was a "kid on the ground with a bloody face, no shoes."

In a news release, Deerfield Police said that officers arrived at the scene to find the boy unresponsive in the roadway with extensive injuries. The vehicle that hit him had already fled the area when officers arrived, police said.

The boy was first taken to Condell Medical Center in Libertyville before being transferred to Lurie Children's Hospital in Chicago, where he remains in a critical condition.

Now, the boy's father Thad Thompson has said that his family are offering a $10,000 reward for any information that leads to the driver's conviction.

Thad Thompson said the reward will go towards the legal fees of the driver if he or she turns themselves in to police, The Chicago Tribune reported.

"They'll have $10,000 toward his legal fees," Thad Thompson said, according to the newspaper. "This was an accident before it was a crime. The driver had no chance," he added.

He added to CBS Chicago that although he doesn't blame the driver for the accident, that person "left [Chase] in the street to die, and that will never stop haunting him until he turns himself in."

Thad Thompson said his son, a sixth-grade student at Caruso Middle School in Deerfield, has autism and is non-verbal. On Friday, the youngster managed to leave the house without a coat or shoes.

"He went through three doors we didn't think he was able to get through," Thad Thompson said. "He ran with his speech-assisted iPad and his hands in his ears, and he ran into the street."

In a statement to Newsweek, the Deerfield Public Schools District said: "Our thoughts and prayers are with the student and his family during this time. District 109 will do everything we can do support the family. Counselors will also be available in our schools for any students who may need assistance dealing with this difficult situation."

Police said the driver continued west along Deerfield Road after hitting the boy near the intersection of Deerfield Road and Beverly Place.

They believe the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run was a dark colored 2013-2016 Ford Escape with a SEL or Titanium trim package. "The vehicle may have extensive damage to the passenger side headlight assembly, fender and grill," police said.

The Lake County Major Crash Assistance team are assisting police with investigating the incident.

Anyone with information about the incident is urged to contact the Deerfield Police Department at 847-945-8636.

This article has been updated with a statement from the Deerfield Public Schools District.

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Stock photo. The family of a 12-year-old boy critically injured in a hit-and-run are offering a reward to the driver if he or she surrenders to police. Getty