Olathe teen injured, dog killed when struck by car running red light

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OLATHE, Kan. -- A 17-year-old is recovering from broken bones and bruises after a car hit him as he crossed an Olathe street with his dog.

The traffic lights indicate when it’s safe to cross the street. Christian Ramirez waited for his signal before walking with his rescue dog.

“They do it quite often because they go to the park,” Ramirez's grandmother Mae Claxton said.

Mae didn’t worry about her grandson until the phone rang just after 6:00 p.m. Police said a 59-year-old woman ran through the red light and into Ramirez and his dog.

The driver did not see that the cross walk traffic light was activated and failed to stop in time before striking the teen and his dog who were crossing the street.

Melissa McDiffett heard the accident and ran to help.

“It sounded like lightening, like metal, and I instantly knew something bad had just happened,” McDiffet said.

McDiffett wanted to teach her daughter how to safely cross the street at that very intersection when the driver collided with high school junior. She stayed by his side praying for both owner and pet.

“He tried to lift up his head. I told him to keep his head down, to stay still,” McDiffett said.

The dog Ricky suffered severe head injuries and died. Ramirez was sent to the hospital. The family said he suffers multiple fractures, has a collapsed lung and concussion. Roger Claxton said through it all, his grandson still has his sense of humor.

“When I first saw Christian when he was lying in the bed, he said 'Papaw, we should’ve gone fishing,'" said Roger.

Police said the 59-year-old female was issued citations for failure to stop at a red light and failure to yield to pedestrians in a cross walk.

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