Correction: An earlier version of the story below had the age of the boy hit by the car incorrect. He is 10.
DETROIT — A motorist is in critical condition after being beaten by a large group of people on the city's east side after his truck struck an 10-year-old boy Wednesday, police said.
"He got his," said one witness to the beating who declined to give her name. "He got beat up real bad."
Sgt. Michael Woody said the man, 54, got out to check on the boy after the collision at about 4:10 p.m. then was assaulted by a large group of men.
"My understanding is that it was a low-speed accident. It was exactly that — just an accident," Woody said, adding that the boy stepped off a curb in front of the truck. "The man did try to stop and render aid. He did everything he could exactly right."
Woody said Wednesday the man, who suffered multiple serious head injuries in the beating, "could potentially die." Thursday, he said the driver remained in critical condition.
Police don't believe the man broke any traffic laws. No suspects have yet been identified.
"We really need some help to figure out what exactly took place, why this man was beaten so horribly badly," Woody said.
Both the driver and boy were taken to St. John Hospital. Woody said the boy's injuries appeared to be less serious.
Later Wednesday, a few neighbors milled around the scene, a busy intersection with a gas station, a Happy's Pizza and a liquor store. Despite the accident, children were still running through the street.
The resident who asked not to be identified said she saw the boy get hit by the truck after he and about three other children attempted to cross the intersection to go to a Clark gas station across the street.
"This little boy was screaming," she said. "There was a lot of people that came out. It was crazy."
She said several other neighbors ran outside when they heard the boy screaming. She said she and family watched as the driver was beaten by a group of men.
She said that after being beaten, the motorist went to the gas station for help.
The woman said several children routinely play outside and she's become increasingly concerned with motorists speeding through the residential neighborhoods.
She said cars are often "driving up and down the street fast."
Woody said the incident isn't being treated as a hit-and-run case because the driver stopped.
"The guy never tried to flee the scene," Woody said. "He got out to check on the child and was assaulted by people in the neighborhood."
Woody said police are searching for the individuals responsible for the assault.