8-year-old deaf child crashes parents’ car in Oklahoma City

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OKLAHOMA CITY-- An eight year old boy, who is hearing impaired, escaped injury Thursday morning after driving his parents' car from Moore and crashing it near the gates of a northwest Oklahoma City neighborhood, police say.

The boy's name is not being released by Oklahoma City police.

"We found out about it when a passerby saw the child standing near the car and called," MSgt Gary Knight said.  "It's probably a 15 to 20 mile drive from Moore to Northwest Oklahoma City."

The accident was reported about 5:30 a.m., just east of May and Wilshire, on Nichols Gate Circle.

Because the boy is hearing impaired, Knight said officers communicated with him by writing notes.

The child's mother was called to the scene.

"There does not appear to be any signs of abuse or neglect or anything along those lines," Knight said.  "It just appears to be that this child woke up in the middle of the night and got the car keys and went on a drive."

Knight said the route the boy drove is unknown, but it's fortunate he didn't crash into another vehicle.

"It's never a safe situation when you have an eight-year-old driving around the city in the middle of the night," he said. "But in this case, it worked out very well.  The child was not injured."

"It's scary and I'm thankful he's okay," said Madi Splitt.

She lives a few feet from where the crash happened.

"I was 'like what happened?'  They said 'do you know sign language?'  I said 'I don't.'  They said 'well we really don't know much at this time, but we're going to figure it out.'"

Thursday afternoon, police released the 911 call.

"There's a car up in the bushes here, and a little boy running around the street," the caller said.  "He's showing me in the trunk now (boy talks).  He doesn't seem to be injured.

"He tells me that, or motioned to me, that he was driving.  I can't understand what he's saying."

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