Police seek driver who struck student on bike ride to school in Overland Park

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OVERLAND PARK, Kan. -- A bike ride to school turned into a trip to the hospital for one Overland Park teenager, who said a driver hit him at a crosswalk, then drove off.

It happened near West 87th Street and Grant Avenue on Jan. 27, and now OP police are asking for your help in tracking down the person behind the wheel.

SuspectCarOfficers on Monday issued pictures of what they believe to be the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run. It appears to be a white SUV, possibly a Isuzu Rodeo.

The victim is 15-year-old Cadden Beard, a Shawnee Mission West sophomore who often rides his bike to school.

Cadden said it was around 7 a.m. when he stopped at the corner of 87th and Grant and pushed the crosswalk button. Once he got the right-of-way, he started pedaling.

“I got about right here,” he explained, “and then I saw the bumper [of a car] and then I tried speeding up because I knew if I kept the pace I was going at, or if I pushed the brake at all, it would’ve smashed my leg.”

That’s when he collided with a car that clipped his back tire and sent him flying.

“I just about died, that was honestly my thought,” Cadden said. “My bike was about right there, and I landed about here.”

Cadden said the driver briefly pulled over, but never got out, and within seconds drove off.

“I was still in shock,” he said. “I was going to go over to them and be like, ‘Hey, I think you hit me,’ but I mean…so I just kind of went on my way.”

A trip to the emergency room showed Cadden suffered minor injuries, but Cadden’s mother is left with mixed emotions.

“He easily could’ve been killed or broken bones, or anything,” said Melissa Whalen, Cadden’s mom. “So I’m very thankful and grateful, but at the same time, I’m very frustrated. I want to know who did it.”

Police are now searching for the driver, sharing photos caught on traffic cameras of what they believe is the car that hit Cadden – a teenager who is now anxious to meet the person behind the wheel.

“It’s like, what were they thinking?” he wondered.

If you have seen the car, or witnessed what happened that day, call Overland Park Police at (913) 895-6300.

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