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Teen at wheel in hit and run at Arlington Middle School

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Updated: 5/15/2013 6:42 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- John Baptisme stood before a judge this morning. It's his first court appearance since he was arrested, after four girls were hit with his SUV while walking near Arlington Middle School Monday morning. The catch, Baptisme wasn't behind the wheel. "He let her drive. She lost control of the wheel, he tried to get control of the wheel and hit those girls," says Baptisme's girlfriend Evelyn Jackson.

According to the police report, a 13-year-old was driving Baptisme's SUV, as he sat in the front seat. Action News asked his girlfriend, the mother of the 13-year-old, why he let her drive. "He was trying to bond with her. That's all he was trying to do. He's always trying to get my kids all that they want. He never likes to tell them no," says Jackson.

But his father says because he has a suspended license, he shouldn't have been given the keys to the SUV in the first place. "I don't know how come his girlfriend let him take the car to take the kid to school. She knows he doesn't have a license," says father Niyo Baptisme.

Now the 25-year-old is facing four counts of leaving the scene of an accident that caused injury, and his family is apologizing on his behalf. "I'm very sorry for what happened," says Baptisme. "I'm so sorry for those kids, because I'm a parent and I can just imagine what happened to those kids, but it was a mistake," says Jackson.

Baptisme's bond is set at $115,018. His next court date is June 5.
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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of Action News Jacksonville

JoeyJoJo - 5/16/2013 4:30 PM
0 Votes
What a dirtbag. The parents are to blame too.

evelynp - 5/16/2013 2:07 PM
0 Votes
THIS WORLD IS CRAZY BECAUSE THERE ARE WORSE CONVICTED CRIMINAL LOOSE IN THE STREET AND THEY GET A SLAP IN THE WRIST, THIS MAN DID A MISTAKE HAS NO PRIORS AND THE MEDIA ITSELF HAS MADE HIM TO LOOK LIKE A MONSTER AND THATS NOT FAIR NEWSMEDIA GET YOUR FACTS RIGHT BEFORE PUTTING IT ON THE AIR IF CONVICTED FELONS GET SECOND CHANCES SO SHOULD HE.HE IS VERY REMORSEFUL AND DONNOT LET THIS DESTROY HIS LIFE HE STILL HAVE A CHANCE AND IM NOT SAYING LET THIS GO BUT JUST LOOK AT THE FACTS AND HELP NOT CONDEM THE BOY THERE ARE ALOT OF WORSE CRIMINALS OUT THERE AND POLICE JOB IS SURE CUT OUT FOR THEM SO MEDIA PLEASE GET YOUR FACTS YA ALWAYS START STORIES WRONG AND DONT EVEN APOLOGIZE FOR THERE MISTAKE AND I THINK THATS SLANDER I JUST PRAY THAT EVERYTHING GOES THE WAY GOD INTENDED

nativejax - 5/16/2013 1:10 PM
0 Votes
This happened near my grandsons school. I cannot imagine this THUG not getting the book thrown at him by the Judge. I am amazed these children were not killed, God was watching over them that day.

whosaysnocan - 5/16/2013 5:03 AM
1 Vote
The mother of this 13 y/o needs to reevaluate the people she has around her kid. She had to know it was driving illegally. The father of this guy is apologizing for his 25 year old son. Really? This one knowingly was driving with a suspended license, then it wants to "bond" with its girlfriend's little girl by letting her drive. And drive a full size SUV on top of that! Bad choices by foolish people and kids got hurt.
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