Wednesday, December 13, 2017
Public safety

Videos indicate boy wandered into Tampa road, was fatally struck

TAMPA — Police now think the 4-year-old boy who was run over by a sport utility vehicle Sunday night wandered into the road before he was struck, based on new surveillance video they have obtained.

Detectives were continuing Tuesday to try to figure out who was driving the Ford Expedition that killed Marterrance Albury on N Florida Avenue. It is possible that the driver was not aware that the boy had been hit, police said.

Police released a new video Tuesday afternoon that appears to show the boy running up and down N Florida Avenue before being struck by an SUV heading south.

"I wish that person, that they would turn themselves in," the boy's mother, Johntea L. Williams, told Bay News 9 on Tuesday.

The new video and footage obtained Monday, both from nearby businesses, captured images of the Expedition as it headed south on N Florida Avenue near 109th Avenue, but neither video shows the boy being struck, police said.

Nevertheless, the videos, along with physical evidence, the boy's injuries and witness statements led investigators to believe that Marterrance likely wandered into the street and was hit, police said.

That contrasts with earlier reports that the boy was riding in a vehicle and either fell or was pushed out of the back passenger door.

Investigators were still working to enhance the videos to learn more about what happened.

New leads have poured in since Monday, when Marterrance's death became the subject of extensive media coverage, police said.

The boy lived in an apartment complex directly in front of where he was hit. Police said Williams, 36, left the child in the care of his 17-year-old brother while she went out with a neighbor Sunday. A witness who saw the boy get hit called 911 about 9:45 p.m.

About 20 minutes later, police said, the boy's brother walked up to officers at the scene and said he could not find his little brother.

"If I didn't feel like he wasn't dependable, I would have never left my child with him. That's his brother. He loves him so much," Williams told Bay News 9 on Tuesday.

Williams returned to the apartment about 4 a.m. When told what happened, she made statements about wanting to take her own life, police said. She was taken into protective custody under the state's Baker Act.

Efforts to obtain more information from Marterrance's older brother were complicated because he has an intellectual disability, police said. Detectives were still questioning the family Tuesday.

The funeral for Marterrance has been set for 11 a.m. Aug. 2 at Ray Williams Funeral Home, 301 N Howard Ave.

Anyone with information about the death is asked to call Tampa police at (813) 231-6130 or Crime Stoppers at toll-free at 1-800-873-8477.

Times staff writer Keeley Sheehan contributed to this report.

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