5-year-old autistic boy hit by vehicle and killed

A 5-year-old autistic boy who wandered miles from a party in West Baton Rouge Parish was hit and killed by a vehicle heading west on U.S. 190, State Police said Sunday.

The child, whose name was not released, walked away from a Christmas party at a North River Road home in Port Allen about 9:15 p.m. Friday and headed west along North River Road, Trooper First Class Jared Sandifer said in a news release.

The boy then walked down a canefield road toward U.S. 190.

A firefighter who joined in the search for the boy found his body about 12:45 a.m. Saturday. The child’s body was in a grassy area beyond the westbound shoulder of U.S. 190 east of La. 415. He had walked about 2 miles.

The evidence prompted State Police to rule out foul play in the child’s death, Sandifer said.

Troopers have few leads on the vehicle that hit the child, Sandifer said, and urged anyone with information to contact Louisiana State Police at (225) 754-8500, or their local law agency.

“Troopers will follow all leads in an effort to bring this case to closure and get answers for the family of the juvenile,” Sandifer said. “No piece of information should be considered insignificant.”