Police: 7-year-old asked to start mom’s car accidentally backs over 2-year-old sister

SALEM, N.H. — A two-year-old in New Hampshire is recovering after a car with her 7-year-old sister in the driver’s seat ran over her, WMUR reports.

Police told WMUR that the girls’ mother gave her car keys to her 7-year-old and asked the child to start her car. This wasn’t the first time the 7-year-old had done this.

“Apparently, the mother had given the 7-year-old keys to go outside and start her vehicle, which was a 2003 Ford Focus,” Capt. Joel Dolan said. “In doing so, when the girl started the vehicle, she was also able to manipulate the vehicle into gear. The vehicle went into reverse, backing over the 2-year-old, who had followed the 7-year-old outside.”

WMUR reports the girls’ mother was inside when the incident occurred. She came running when the 7-year-old called for help.

“The mother went outside, according to officer, as well as one of the neighbors,” Dolan told WMUR. “They were able to pick up the 2-year-old, and they were also able to call 911. The Salem Fire Department as well as the Salem Police Department responded.”

The two-year-old sustained some broken bones in her legs and injuries to her chin and scalp. She also has bruising on the side of her body. Her injuries are considered non life-threatening.

Police warn that children should never start a vehicle.

“They are inquisitive,” Dolan told WMUR. “It might be something that they ask their parents to do, but to let them go out there and do it unsupervised on a piece of equipment that is as heavy and dangerous as a motor vehicle, it’s just not good common sense.”

Police told WMUR they are considering whether to file charges.