Driver cases out, then deliberately runs down, two young boys on suburban sidewalk

Driver cases out, then deliberately runs down, two young boys on suburban sidewalk
Oghaleoghene Atuno, one of his victims (Images: Left—Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office, right—provided)

If you Google the name Oghaleoghene Atuno, your search will come up empty. That is a curious development in light of the fact the 21-year-old Atuno is in police custody, having been charged with the attempted murder of two boys, ages 11 and 12, in Aurora, Colo. earlier this month.

The fact that Atuno is black and his victims are white, coupled with security video that shows Atuno circling the cul-de-sac before slamming into the boys and driving off, suggests the possibility of a hate crime enhancement. Yet except for local media, the story has gone largely untouched. None of the three major networks has reported the crime, and neither have The New York Times or Washington Post.

According to Denver CBS affiliate KCNC (h/t Chris Menahan, DC Dirty Laundry), the incident took place on Apr. 5. Footage from area security cameras show a vehicle that matched the description of one owned by Atuno’s mother circling the cul-de-sac several times before accelerating and running down the boys, who were on the sidewalk. One of the two boys was seriously injured, suffering a skull fracture.

When law enforcement questioned Atuno, he confessed to the hit-and-run, according to the affidavit. When asked why he left the scene, law enforcement said Atuno claimed to be scared.

Security footage of vehicle circling cul-de-sac

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Atuno faces felony charges of attempted murder, child abuse, vehicular assault, leaving the scene of an accident, and and driving with an expired license. Police say Atuno could face more charges as the investigation continues.

Authorities haven’t revealed a motive for the crime.

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles

Ben Bowles is a freelance writer and regular contributor to "Liberty Unyielding."


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