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Dash Cam: Police Pull Over 7-Year-Old Driver

Dash Cam: Police Pull Over 7-Year-Old Driver

Detroit Free Press via YellowBrix

June 23, 2011

CASEVILLE, MI – His stepfather and mom say they are just as dumbfounded as anyone else about why their 7-year-old took the car keys and went for a 20-mile ride trying to get to his biological father’s house.

Now, the boy, who was safely stopped by police Monday morning outside of Caseville — and found barefoot and in his pajamas in his stepfather’s red Pontiac Sunfire — faces a juvenile charge of unlawful use of an automobile in Huron County Probate Court.

Huron County Prosecutor Timothy Rutkowski said he filed the petition Wednesday in Huron County Family Court to try to help the boy.

“I filed the petition to get the young person into our family court system with the idea we would try to find out why the young man did what he allegedly did,” Rutkowski said, adding that the boy’s reasoning is still not clear to investigators. He said the investigation did not show anything startling in the boy’s home life that might explain why he took the car keys about 10 a.m. as his mother slept and drove off.

“He’s a really smart kid — he’s an intelligent kid,” the boy’s stepfather, David Marks, 32, said Wednesday afternoon, pausing outside their Sheridan Township home to try to find the words to explain, as the blond-haired boy leaned over the back of a couch to look out a window. "We’re a hardworking family; we’re good people. Just a bad thing happened.

“We want him to go into third grade as a third-grader, not with this hanging over him.”

Outside, Marks stood in the yard next to the Pontiac that police say the boy drove more than 60 m.p.h. Monday morning, determined to drive to his father’s house about 12 miles away in the Filion area.

Marks said that he and his wife, Nicole Lyn Marks, the boy’s mother, who didn’t want to talk to the Free Press, don’t understand the boy’s determination, especially because he sees his father regularly.

“Heck, he just spent all day Sunday with him,” Marks said, looking frustrated. “I don’t know.”

And they don’t know the answer to the question so many — including calls from as far away as Japan — have been asking: How did the boy learn to drive?

Sitting in the yard among a blue-and-white soccer ball, a basketball hoop and a black-and-white mountain bike, are two lawn tractors — the only other things even remotely resembling a car.

Marks said they plan to get counseling for the boy: “We’re working on it.”

The juvenile petition asks Judge David Clabuesch to order the boy and his parents to appear in family court within the next two weeks.

If the boy admits what he has done, the proceedings skip over the process to determine guilt and into a treatment phase, which could include counseling, Rutkowski said.

“Some people might not understand that,” he said. “Kids make mistakes all the time. If we can assist them so it doesn’t happen again and help them be a better person, that’s a very good thing.”

  • Picture_max50


    about 3 years ago


    thats crazy and impressive that a seven year old kid able to to touch the pedals and drive without crasing now how could he see out the windsheild thats the first ive heard of a seven year old kid drivein and not crasing

  • Sunset_max50


    about 3 years ago


    That was increditable. WOW I also put my dads truck in the ditch when I was learning to drive. Although it was my older brother fault. We had a horseshoe drive way and I was going to pull into the first one but he told me to use the 2nd one, so I swung out to get the truck in there and he told me no you don't have to do that. Well dad came out when he heard my brother yelling at me and he just laughed.

  • Img_0490_max50


    about 3 years ago


    Wow! I'm glad that no one got hurt.

  • 100_0773_max50


    about 3 years ago


    impressive! luckily no one was hurt.

  • Photo_user_blank_big


    about 3 years ago


    I have to give the kid credit--seven years old and he was able to drive w/o getting into an accident? When I was 8, I started up the pickup and when I realized that if I put my foot on the pedals, I wouldn't be able to see through the windshield, I became frightened and drove into a ditch.
    The pickup truck had to be towed out of the ditch, I got some stern words from my dad and a beat-down from my mother. I was cured!

  • 1051193310_l_max50


    about 3 years ago


    Good work by the coppers, seems the prosecution is approaching this the proper way too!

  • 309


    about 3 years ago


    If he made it 20 miles without hitting anything then he's a better driver than half the people on the road today! LOL

  • Anonymous-killer-whale-232189_1__max50


    about 3 years ago


    Amazing !!!!!!

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