CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Family and friends of an 11-year-old boy who was hit and killed while riding his bike in west Charlotte will gather Wednesday for a vigil in his memory.
Amari died last Friday after police said 19-year-old Rodney McCorkle Jr. hit him on Glenwood Drive and ran from the scene.
McCorkle was charged with felony hit-and-run, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of a stolen vehicle.
The child was taken to Atrium Health’s Carolinas Medical center, where he died.
Authorities said Amari was riding a bicycle on Glenwood Drive when McCorkle struck him. The child was thrown onto the car’s hood and windshield.
McCorkle then continued to drive before braking, causing Amari to fall off the car. According to officials, McCorkle left the scene and turned onto Interstate 85 North with the bicycle still stuck underneath it.
Investigators said the mother of the suspect called police around 7:20 p.m. Friday to report that her son had struck a person and that he wanted to turn himself in.
After McCorkle turned himself in, the car was found later with drug paraphernalia inside, according to police. The car was also reported stolen.
Amari’s grandmother Chella Whisnant said it has been difficult to process, but it seems unreal.
“Lost for words,” Whisnant said. “How can you leave a child, an 11-year-old child, after you hit him and just leave him on the side of the road? You leave an 11-year-old child there on the street dead. Where’s your conscience at? I don’t get it. It’s unreal.”
Whisnant told Channel 9′s DaShawn Brown the last time she saw Amari was on Christmas Day and said it was one of their happiest moments, but she never imagined that would be the last.
She described Amari as outgoing, playful and a gamer. Whisnant said she felt uneasy Friday, even before learning what happened and added the pain she feels is only amplified for her daughter, Amari’s mother.
“She only had two children, a girl and a boy,” Whisnant said. “And, he was so attached to his mother and so attached to his sister. He was so protective. And, she loved her children so much.”
Amari’s mother said their family plans to release balloons and light candles for Amari at the corner of Suttle and Lineberger streets in Shelby, North Carolina.
Glenwood Drive was closed between Plainview Road and Hashem Drive while officers investigated the scene.
This is an ongoing investigation. Check back with wsoctv.com for more information.
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