Mom Furious After Superintendent Hits Child With Car, No Charges Filed

A Missouri mom has accused police of failing to properly investigate the driver who hit her 12-year-old last week.

That driver happened to be Matt Ruble, the superintendent of the local school district in Farmington, Missouri. A Ring doorbell video that surfaced on social media showed two boys biking before the collision on September 20. A white Jeep crashed into one of the children, sending him rolling on the ground. The boy's friend ran over, screaming, "Nathan! Nathan!"

The car stopped immediately and Ruble came out. He could be heard asking, "You alright, buddy? You okay?"

Farmington Police Chief Rick Baker told Newsweek that no charges were being filed, as 12-year-old Nathan biked through a stop sign and Ruble never attempted to flee the scene.

"Mr. Ruble was not in violation of any state law or municipal ordinance," Baker said. "The child on the bike failed to stop at the stop sign, causing the collision."

Stop Sign Detroit Michigan
Here, a stop sign in Detroit, Michigan, on January 12, 2011. A Missouri mom has accused police of failing to properly investigate the driver who hit her 12-year-old last week. STAN HONDA / Contributor/AFP

After the crash, Nathan's mom went outside and spoke with Ruble. She took her child to the hospital and filed a police report the next day.

A spokesperson for the Farmington School District told Newsweek, "As a District and as a community, together we place the safety of children as our top priority."

But the mom, who has remained anonymous, told KMOV-TV that her complaint was being swept under the rug. She said that she heard nothing from the superintendent since the accident and called the police's refusal to file charges "disgusting."

"I don't feel like they've handled it properly because if they did, they would've taken a written statement, and the pictures we had of my son at the hospital, they would've contacted the children who were playing with him, and not leave it so one-sided," she told the local station.

In 2019, 40 children aged 14 and younger were killed in traffic crashes while riding bicycles in the U.S., according to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Bicycle injuries and fatalities among children have steadily fallen over the past 30 years. However, a large proportion of bicycle-related injuries that are reported to emergency departments still comprise children aged 15 and younger, according to the NHTSA.

Children are prone to different biking errors than adults. They are likely to be involved in crashes midblock, where they are entering a road from a driveway or alley, at intersections with stop signs and while traveling in the same direction as an overtaking car.

Updated 10/03/2022, 2:48 p.m. ET: This story has been updated with comments from Farmington Police Chief Rick Baker and a Farmington School District spokesperson.