Man injured after being run over, dragged by car in Westport

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A man suffered critical injuries after being run over by a car and dragged for several blocks in Westport overnight.

Witnesses say the man in his late 20s staggered into the street near 42nd and Pennsylvania and fell down after being involved in a fight. A car ran over him and dragged him in the undercarriage as he made a turn onto Broadway.

"He has some very critical injuries as you can just imagine," Sgt. Bill Mahoney said. "We're just trying to piece everything together from what witnesses tell us."

The driver is in custody and undergoing a blood test. Police are talking to two passengers and looking at surveillance video to figure out the sequence of events.

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26 comments

  • Cameron Mael

    This is our son Derek. I am his Father. We are in pain like we never knew existed over this. I thank all of you for the kind comments. His condition is not good and he is not expected to live much longer. 24 hours max. We moved to St Petersburg, Florida 2 years ago and he was finally acting as if he was finally going to join myself, his Mother Debra, and his dear younger brother, Duke. He graduated from Shawnee Mission North and was brilliant. He was also an Eagle Scout. He was independent and wanted to learn the ropes on his own and had done well. He wanted to join us in Florida when he was ready…which was about now. He was only 28. He graduated from Johnson County Community College.We were not close with too many people or family left in the KC area….but he did have his ”buds”. God bless all of them…and our prayers especially go out to his friend Scotty who was with him. He is devastated as well. If there were any witnesses that can aid us, we would be grateful. The part of this story that is not told is that Derek and his friend were walking near where this happened. 2 bicyclist ”who stated they rode around there often”…according to what I was told…were riding their bikes in a fashion that was obnoxious…and Derek simply said something to them. Derek and his friend then proceeded to Derek’s car…thinking the matter was over. They did not realize the bicyclist had parked their. Derek was no fighter and peace loving…..he was no match for the sucker punch one of the brutes hit him in the face with. He did that to my son simply over Derek commenting on his bicycle riding habits. We all know how bad bicyclists can be….not all…but some. It knocked him out….at least for a moment..and he fell into the road when the car hit him. It dragged him several blocks. It crushed his skull and his brains were visible from the trauma of being dragged under the car. If the car had stopped immediately, Derek would likely be fine. At that point, he would have just had peen punched. The driver is evidently saying he was not aware he hit him with his car…but I somehow doubt that…or obviously question it. How can someone not know that? One thing is for sure….being dragged under the car is why my son is going to die…or maybe has already as I type this. The bicycle riders got away. The police still have not found them. I beg of anyone who can help find who these guys were who punched him …to please help the police find them. Please…I beg you. My son and I were very close…he was a very very decent kid. Derek is in God’s hands now, but we have been told by his doctors he may die at any moment. His body is still trying…his heart rate is good…and so is his blood pressure…but his brain trauma is very bad. God’s plan is cruel and hard to understand for us now. We are considering donating his organs to help others live. We have been asked about it. A part of me died today. It is so hard for us to be in Florida and so far away. We are not completely poor, but have no extra money. I hope you young people out there find inspiration in this story to work hard to be prosperous so that someday if you need the money to bury your son, or even the money for the airfare…that you will work hard while young so you do not find yourself in the pathetic financial shape I, Derek’s Dad, has ended up in. I love you Derek…and will miss you forever.

    • Ben

      After reading your story, I feel your pain and pray for your son. If the bikers were riding around at that time of night, they must live close and someone must know them. The biker didn’t have the courage to fight fairly but instead resorted to a cowardly sucker punch and ran away like a little school girl. By now, the bikers have told some of their friends so the police should be getting some tips soon. I am sure there is a reward by the tips hotline so collect that money if you know something and you can to it anonymously. God Bless your son and your entire family.

      • Cameron Mael

        Thank you again for the helpful comments. It is my hope also that tips will come in. Pray for my son. If anyone of out there can have ”Derek Mael”…added to a prayer list…those can be powerful.

      • Cameron Mael

        Ben. You need to examine yourself. I fear you might be more like the two people on the bicycles. Even now that you have been told this is my son…you have not let off. That demonstrates a cruelness that is endless times worse than any fault my son had. Derek’s biggest problem was not any of what you listed. However, he was lonely. We are all from Johnson County. I am 60 years old. We moved to St Petersburg, Florida only 2 years ago to end our retirement years in a warmer climate…and to make a new home in a new place. We did not dislike the KC area…our reason for moving were very simple. We were ready for a warmer climate. We now live where people go on vacations at. Derek’s brother…Duke…did come down here with us. Derek wanted to remain there a bit longer to ease the pain of saying goodbye to Kansas…and KC in general. It took him a while to realize he belonged with us and he was ready to come down here and live also. He realized that most of his friends had gone separate ways…etc…and that his real place was with us. He sort of got stuck there financially and had not been able to move as soon as he hoped…but he was ready now. During that time…he became lonely. don’t fault him too much for his fun in Westport. Maybe you skipped fun like that….but considering how mean you sound…as pitiful as you try to make him look….it is you who is a sorry person. Shame on you for the hate you have written.

      • Cameron Mael

        Ben. I will apologize. I lost track of who the comments were from and realize you wrote the nice comment above that started with ”…after reading your story…” I do appreciate the way you softened up. some of my replies to you have been too harsh. in my grief, I am not functioning very well now. On a positive note…we just got a call from the doctor that was at least a little posit. I will keep people posted. Everyone keep parting for him…maybe it is working.

    • Genevieve Dsilva

      Hi CJ, this is Genevieve! I have added Derek , you Debra and Duke in my prayers! Tim told me the news today! I am speechless! Words cannot express how sorry I am! Derek was a great person and did not deserve this! I hope you find those two bicyclist ! Take care CJ ! Again, my heart goes out to you and your family!

    • Dan Martin

      Cameron I worked with Derek at Harbor Freight for almost a year, we became friends and would hang out at his apartment playing X-box after work many times and went to lunch together pretty much any day we worked together. I am a introvert that has a real hard time making friends and Derek was a friend from day one. I’m having trouble typing this as I’m shaking so hard, this is a terrible loss and I can’t believe this has happened to such a great person, I will be missing the church memorial but I will be at Saints tomorrow night. I would give anything right now for another night of cold pizza and need for speed. Rest In Peace my friend.

  • Cameron Mael

    Well Ben…I can understand your truths you mention in your comment…but remember that many people loved this guy. He is my son….and the circumstances are not near like how you described. He did not get in a fight. He was attacked. Then he was the victim of a hit a run. I am sure that even where you go for fun, tragedy can strike. He will die. I hope you don’t feel he deserved it. After all…despite all the truths you mention…I can assure you my son truly was a fun loving kid. The guy who hit him struck a good kid who was 28 and had ”never” been in a fight. If what this guy did to my son…and what the driver did by dragging him was not murder…it was a whole lot like it. Your sarcasm had merit…but is a little cruel to those of us that knew him.

  • Susan

    As a parent, my heart aches for you. Can’t imagine anything worse than losing a child. I pray that your son is not suffering and that the police find these people. Please ignore the negative posts. Regardless, if your son was drunk or not,, he did not deserve this, no one does. Judgmental people are miserable with themselves. Don’t lose faith in God. I hope you can turn your suffering into helping someone else. Again, I’m sorry this horrific accident happened. God Bless!

  • Debra Knight

    I work with Derek we had our difference but really started to get along. I pray that he pulls through cause he will truely be missed. Im a parent myself with children his age i cant even imagine the pain you are going through. My prayers are with you in your time of sorrow. Hopefully the find the bicyclists Derek doesnt deserve this.

  • Cameron Mael

    It is now Saturday morning and we are soon leaving from Florida to fly up to KC to finally be able to see our dear son Derek. Through God’s grace, we have been able to obtain the funds…plus…his job…at Harbor Freight….has been a Godsend. I am at a loss of words to say how much. Plus my wife’s Boss has made generous offers of help…and also the Social Workers at his hospital…St Lukes at The Plaza…also did their share. It is interesting to note that Derek was also born there, and the accidennHe and his Mom were LIFEFLIGHT helicopterer there from St Joseph at 435 and State Line. Dr’s Cohen and Yeast…and the neo natal staff saved them both 28 years ago when he was born….he is a ”preemie”. Thought some here would like to know this. It happened nearly in front of St Lukes and they were right there for him. He has not only managed to still be alive…he is so strong…but there may even be a miracle at work. Too early to say. I will keep people here posted …but please pray hard…like you never have before. I love all of you that have taken the time to notice him. He is worth it. My heart hurts so bad. Please pray for his Mom…Debra…and his Borther…Duke also. I can hardly stand the pain I see in them also. Hang on Derek…we are coming.

  • Cameron Mael

    It is now Saturday morning and we are soon leaving from Florida to fly up to KC to finally be able to see our dear son Derek. Through God’s grace, we have been able to obtain the funds…plus…his job…at Harbor Freight….has been a Godsend. I am at a loss of words to say how much. Plus my wife’s Boss has made generous offers of help…and also the Social Workers at his hospital…St Lukes at The Plaza…also did their share. It is interesting to note that Derek was also born there. He and his Mom were LIFEFLIGHT helicopterer there from St Joseph at 435 and State Line. Dr’s Cohen and Yeast…and the neo natal staff saved them both 28 years ago when he was born….he is a ”preemie”. Thought some here would like to know this. It happened nearly in front of St Lukes and they were right there for him. He has not only managed to still be alive…he is so strong…but there may even be a miracle at work. Too early to say. I will keep people here posted …but please pray hard…like you never have before. I love all of you that have taken the time to notice him. He is worth it. My heart hurts so bad. Please pray for his Mom…Debra…and his Borther…Duke also. I can hardly stand the pain I see in them also. Hang on Derek…we are coming.

    • Babette Perry

      To Cam, Deb and Duke: I am so deeply sorry for your loss. Derek was a bright spot to all that knew him. Your heartbreak is tragic and cruel. I pray God’s comfort will see you through this terrible time. We love you. Babette, Ann, Zabrina & Nicole

  • Ben

    Sunday morning and the prayers continue for your son. May you and your wife be greeted with good news from the Dr. when you arrive at the hospital. It is none of our business but please let us know of his progress. God Bless you all. Mr. Mael: Your posts have touched my heart and the hearts of many in this city. God will give you the strength to endure.

  • Jessica Carroll

    I work with Derek at a tool store in shawnee. I can safely say that all of us are praying and sending our good vibes your way, Cameron, and to the rest of your family. He’s a great guy to work with.

  • robert clark

    As i sit her reading this terrible news of this fine young man that i had so many memories of his youth as a scout and as a fine young person the same age as my son – words are hard to find of what to say – cj and deb may god be with you at this time . i am so sorry for your loss ..

  • Warren

    I know that Derek’s murderer and his friends are keeping track of the comments in this story. If you know anything or have any information on this hipster that not only knocked Derek out with one hit and Derek’s head hit the ground. But got on top of Derek and continued to beat him in to certain death. Please please please call tips hotline. There are over a hundred cameras in the Westport area and I can guarantee that there are a few with Derek’s killers face plain as day. If you were the friend that was with this guy that night he killed Derek, you are personally looking at years in prison when he gets caught for being there with him. That is unless you call tips and or go down to speak to the AIU detectives and give your side of the story now. This has to be riding heavy on you man. He has a Brother, Father and Mother that will never be able to see him again. All because your friend through a temper tantrum over drunks in Westport. I just want you to know Derek passed away on June 4th at 12:03am due to those initial injuries from the first blow to the head. Do you know how hard it is to watch your best friend, your son, your brother die? Watch home take his last breath of life? I can personally tell you… Its devastating…. Kansas City has a lot of detectives on this case now that he has died. They won’t stop until this guy is behind bars. The longer you wait to give your side of the story, the more charges they will have against you. Just give yourself up man. It’s not easy living in hiding for the rest of your life. They have your dna from the hits, they have your finger prints and they have you on video. The more effort they have to put in to this case, the worse it will be for you.