ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) – A local mom and daughter are shaken up after a man driving a stolen car slammed into their vehicle.
The accident happened Monday night on Spring Creek Road in Rockford. Both women survived, but while Mikayla Knautz said that she and her mother are lucky to have made it out alive, it was a traumatic experience that she will always remember.
Cassandra Peters picked up her 17-year-old daughter, Knautz, at Rock Valley College on Monday night, when an SUV smashed into them of Spring Creek Road near Elder Lane as they were driving home.
“It was just traumatic. Honestly, I am still pretty shaken up by it,” Knautz said. “So, it was just driving straight towards us and kind of swerving around, and my mom tried moving out of the way, and it just came so fast, we did not have enough time. We ended up getting hit from the front end and from the drivers side end, and we did a full 360 spin from the car, and my mom was actually trapped in there.”
While Knautz just had minor injuries, including a lot of bruises, the same could not be said for her mother.
“Her injuries that she suffered from were actually a broken femur and patella, which is her knee cap, was broken into 9 different pieces, so 2/3 of it had to take out during surgery. Her injuries were pretty severe,” Knautz said.
The Winnebago County Sheriff’s Office said that the man who caused the crash had stolen the SUV at gunpoint earlier that night. Sheriff Gary Caruana reminded people to always be alert.
“Let us take Spring Creek for example, that is a no passing, they get antsy and they get in a hurry, and they will just blow around you and all of sudden, they are going 50 to 75 miles an hour. It is 45 mile zone, and if you stop them, they say I never speed and it is right here,” Caruana said. “You are causing these accidents. Look at these tragic accidents that are happening.”
Knautz said though that she is just grateful she and her mom made it out alive.
“It could have been way worse,” Knautz said. “If they would have hit us in any certain way, we could have died, it just really depends on how they hit us. We are honestly lucky with what we got.”
Knautz said her mom had a long road to recovery. A GoFundMe has been set up to help the family with their medical expenses.