A seven-year-old boy was “thrown in the air” and landed face first after being hit by a 4×4 which rammed into a group of children, a court was told.
Eight pupils and parents were standing outside a primary school in southwest London when they were struck by a car in September 2020.
Some of the children, who were as young as six, ended up under the vehicle after the collision, which happened just after 3pm on 8 September, at Beatrix Potter Primary School in Wandsworth. Others were left lying around the car.
The seven-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, had his back to the car when he was struck.
Dolly Rincon-Aguilar was picking up her two children from the school at the time and is accused of mounting the pavement in her Toyota Rav4.
Appearing at Kingston Crown Court, the 39-year-old pleaded not guilty to eight counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.
On a road with a 20mph speed limit, Rincon-Aguilar drove her green car onto the pavement, hitting a tree and then a wall, the court heard.
To pupils’ “horror”, the car “continued and accelerated to the school entrance where a group of parents and children were stood”, Nathan Rasiah QC, prosecuting, said.
“It appeared that the car continued to speed up straight towards them before coming to a stop outside the school gate,” he continued.
Driver says she ‘lost control’
He said that as Rincon-Aguilar was leaving a parking spot, she put her foot on the accelerator to avoid an oncoming car and then applied the handbrake when she heard screams.
She told police after the incident: “I went numb and lost control.
“I don’t think I even accelerated, it felt like I wasn’t pressing anything.”
Mr Rasiah said: “This was an unintended acceleration due to a misapplication of the accelerator pedal.”
In a witness statement read out to the court, a parent of one of the pupils described seeing the car “accelerating at speed” and hearing a “really loud noise”.
“There was a little boy with his back to the car, it just went straight through him,” it went on.
“He fell forward and went under the car, his head was by the front wheels and his leg was by the back. He wasn’t moving.”
Victims suffer fractured faces and skulls
The court heard that Rincon-Aguilar was “probably in a state of shock”, but the witness statements described her as being “calm” and seated in the car.
Two victims had fractures to the face and skull, with one needing emergency treatment to remove a blood clot.
Some of the children suffered “serious” fractures to the leg, arm and socket.
‘A seriously bad piece of driving’
Mr Rasiah said: “This was a seriously bad piece of driving which fell far below what is expected of a competent and careful driver.
“It’s not suggested this was intentional and the defendant plainly didn’t set about the day trying to cause harm.”
CCTV footage shows the incident lasted just eight seconds before the car stopped, having travelled 35 metres, the court heard.
Paramedics and London’s Air Ambulance were called to the scene just after 3.10pm.
Eleven people, including seven children, were treated on site, with four adults and five children taken to hospital while two children were discharged.
Rincon-Aguilar, who is from Wandsworth in south London, took a breath test which indicated that she was not driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
She got her driving licence more than two years ago.
The trial continues.