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Parents Say More Safety Measures Need to Be Taken at Castro Elementary

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Posted: Feb 29, 2012 4:34 PM

Updated: Feb 29, 2012 4:44 PM

MISSION - A 6-year-old boy is home after being injured in a hit-and-run Tuesday. The man accused of hitting the Castro Elementary student is locked up.

This accident was the second this school year at Castro Elementary. A neighbor suggested speed bumps. One dad says he walks here everyday because drivers race through here.

Police still don't know exactly how fast Jaime Garza Gonzalez was allegedly traveling when he hit the 6-year-old student. The boy was not in a crosswalk. He darted onto the street. Police say Gonzalez may not have been charged in the accident if he would have stopped.

There are two manned crosswalks at Castro Elementary. Mission CISD spokesperson Craig Verley says each school must figure out how many crosswalks are needed. Some schools just have one. The district makes a determination on a schools pickup policy at the beginning of the year. The principal reviews traffic patterns to figure out how best to keep students safe. Marisol Salinas wants to see more done.

"I think there should be four of them, one on every side. Kids tend to cross the street no matter how much you tell them not to cross the street. They just take off. They just want to go home," says Salinas.

Last fall, another student was hit. Following that accident "no parking" signs were posted. After this incident, the district sent out a letter reminding parents not to park along the streets surrounding the school. Instead, they're asking parents to line up and drivers to slow down. Police say kids will be kids and sometimes they'll dart into the road.

Parents of Castro Elementary students say they've seen first-hand the potential danger as students are dropped off for school.

Vicenta Moreno walks her children and the neighbor children to school at Castro Elementary every day. She says the parents can put others' children in danger.

"Well, sometimes us parents aren't responsible drivers," says Moreno.

Jovita Garza heard about the 6-year-old student being hit Tuesday afternoon. She has always walked her daughter to the crosswalk.

"Because I'm afraid something will happen to her, so I always bring her straight to school," says Garza.

Garza says not all parents do the same.

"Oh yeah, they're little kids, and sometimes they drop them off way over here. I don't know why they don't worry as much as I do, but sometimes they drop them over here and they're smaller than her," says Garza.

Parents drive faster than some would like.

"What we're doing in the police department is putting more officers on the street to patrol the school areas to deter and slow down these people that are driving fast, says Cpl. Manny Casas of the Mission Police Department.

Casas says they are cracking down on speeders, especially in school zones. He says it's important to drive carefully in school zones to protect our children.

Topics: Mission, castro elementary, safety, accident, hit and run, Jaime garza Gonzalez, crosswalk

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