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Troopers searching for driver who struck 8-year-old boy in Bradenton

MANATEE -- An 8-year-old boy was hospitalized on Tuesday after he was struck by a car that drove off and left him sprawled on the ground, the Florida Highway Patrol said.

At 5:15 p.m., the boy was riding a scooter on the westbound lane of 26th Avenue East when a car made a right turn at Fourth Street East and struck him, FHP Cpl. Dave McInturff said.

The car drove off.

Xavier Erazo, 15, was talking on his cellphone in the front yard of his home in the 2600 block of Third Street East when he spotted the car hit the boy.

"I saw the kid tumble and it was nasty," Erazo said.

The car dragged the scooter for about a block until a man and a woman inside stepped out and argued, Erazo said.

The man removed the scooter from under the car, a media release said.

The man then walked off and the woman drove south on Third Street East. "They have no heart," Erazo said.

The boy was taken to Bayfront Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries, McInturff said.

"He's going to be OK," said the boy's grandmother, Eugenia Mays. "We were scared and didn't know what was going on. We heard he was laying out on the ground not moving. We were thinking the worst. He's doing good now, thank God."

The youngster lives with Mays in the 2600 block of Fourth Street East.

The car involved was described as a faded maroon Ford with right front damage.

Anyone with information on the hit-and-run is asked to call McInturff, 941-751-8355.

"If we can find out who did this, we'll be very grateful," Mays said.