Clearwater toddler, 2, severely injured in ATV accident

Boy was not wearing a helmet while riding with dad

CLEARWATER, Fla. - It's difficult to tell that something tragic happened in the parking lot just off of Douglas Avenue near Engman St. at the Martin Luther King Jr. Center in Clearwater.

AJ Jerrido says her son and 2-year old grandson, Brandon Jr., pulled an ATV out of their garage on LaSalle St. and went for a ride.   

"You've got a father who's got his 2-year-old son on an ATV with him driving around a parking lot.  And the child is thrown from the ATV and is critically injured from hitting the pavement," said Rob Shaw with Clearwater Police.

According to the family, the accident happened when Brandon Jerrido, Sr., the 2-year-old's father, drove the ATV into a chain that was stretched across the driveway into the parking lot..

"I don't think we can really get into that, or comment on that, because, like I said, we're still part of an active investigation, trying to piece together what happened," Shaw explained.

Clearwater Police say that neither rider was wearing a helmet or other protective gear when that accident happened around dusk.  A child protection investigator did visit the home today.

"It could be a potential neglect case.  The child is in All Children's Hospital, fighting for his life," Shaw said.

"He's very loving," said his grandmother, AJ Jerrido.

The ATV Safety Institute provides riders with a list of golden rules for riding.  Number one on that list is to always wear a helmet.

As a young boy fights for his life after an accident, a family can only grasp at hope.

"We're trying to hang in as a family.  Hoping that, you know, the baby comes through," said the boy's grandmother.

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