HARRIS COUNTY, Texas -- Family members and classmates are dealing with a devastating incident in northern Harris County where a teenager walking to school was fatally struck by a driver.
The incident happened by MacArthur High School in the 4400 block of Aldine Mail Route before 7 a.m. Wednesday.
The victim, 17-year-old Jose Torres, had to make a dangerous dash across five lanes of traffic to get to school.
“Now he's gone,” said Noami Ibarra, the victim’s cousin. “It's like literally a nightmare.”
“You keep replaying and replaying the things you said to him in the things you said to each other.”
Investigators said a woman driving a green pickup was dropping her child off at the school and was speeding when she hit Torres, who was standing in the turning lane.
“Our initial investigation shows that the driver was traveling approximately 35 to 40 mph,” said Sgt. Cedric Collier with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.
“See it every morning. Every morning, they fly through,” Christine Salazar said.
After the incident, several neighbors told KHOU 11 the road is dangerous, with drivers disregarding school zones along with street lights and school zone lights that don’t always work.
"I asked Aldine police before, 'Why aren't you giving people tickets?'" John Roberts told us. "They tell me, 'The light's not flashing legally, we can't do that.' Why don't you tell the commanding officer? They said, 'We have voiced our opinion but nothing has been done.'"
After we called Aldine ISD to ask about the complaints, we saw workers inspecting the signs Wednesday afternoon. The district said they would increase patrols in the area while they investigate and they plan to meet with Precinct 2 about the problems.
“This is what it took for them to realize what they needed to do," said one parent. "Sometimes, police officers are in their cars, sitting down looking at the kids cross."
“It's sad what happened, but one of these days I knew it was going to happen. And that's the sad part about the whole thing,” said neighbor John Roberts.
Torres, a senior at MacArthur, lived across from the school. His mother was one of the first people on the scene.
“All she knows is that it's him, and he's not here now, and she is yearning for him. She's looking for him and she's calling him, and he's not there,” said Ibarra.
The oldest of four children, Torres was a promising student set to graduate in May. He had dreams of being a soccer star - dreams shattered much too soon.
“I'm going to hold him I'm gonna hold them in here forever, and I'm never gonna let them go I'm going to live for him. I'm going to live for him,” said the victim’s cousin.
As far as charges are concerned against the driver, that’s up to a grand jury, deputies said.