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EXCLUSIVE: The California juvenile convicted of mowing down a mother walking her 8-month-old in a stroller in Los Angeles last year will appear in court Thursday morning to ask for early release, Fox News Digital has learned.
The hearing, on the docket for 9 a.m., was scheduled at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, according to Shea Sanna, a deputy district attorney in Los Angeles who had called for stiffer sentencing for the suspect to begin with.
The young mother, who has asked only to be identified as Rachel, said Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascon’s office did not reach out to her in advance regarding the hearing.
“I remain incredibly disappointed with the justice system in LA, but I am unsurprised to learn that I am yet again being denied my rights as a victim to participate and use my voice in the judicial process,” she told Fox News Digital Wednesday. “F— George Gascon.”
She said she expected her assailant’s next hearing to be on Nov. 8, near the end of what she expected to be a half-year sentence in a diversionary program for juveniles – already far lighter than she had hoped for.
The story made national headlines in June after the Gascon’s office, under his progressive criminal justice reform directives, sought the five- to seven-month sentence in juvenile probation camp, a punishment for young offenders described as less severe than military school but harsher than summer camp.
Shocking surveillance video shows the teen driver, who was in a stolen vehicle, speeding the wrong way down a one-way backstreet, plowing into a mother walking her infant son in a stroller. Los Angeles police said they found drugs in the driver’s system and marijuana in the car, according to an incident report obtained by Fox News. He didn’t have a driver’s license and was already on probation for a prior offense – felony poisoning after allegedly spiking a high school girl’s drink, as Fox News’ Bill Melugin uncovered in June.
Photos taken at the scene show the driver as a thin, White male with a neck tattoo and eyes that were barely open as he spoke with police outside the stolen car. While the 8-month-old victim miraculously escaped serious injury, photos showed a tire-tread-shaped bruise on the back of his scalp.
The suspect tried to flee before a good Samaritan in a full-size pickup truck rammed him head-on, knocking his car off the road.
The teen pleaded guilty to three felony charges, two for assault and one for attempting to flee, and received a sentence of just five to seven months in a juvenile probation camp. Current and former prosecutors have said the suspect could have faced additional charges and stiffer penalties given the evidence.
However, Gascon claimed his office had charged the teen with “the most serious offenses possible under the law.”
Rachel has described the hit-and-run as an attempted murder, far more serious than Gascon’s office makes it out to be.
Days after his office retracted a claim that the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, which had no connection to the case and was not the investigating agency, “agreed” to the charges, Gascon called reporting on his handling of the case “misinformation.”
He said it was “important that the public knows the facts” and stated, “a minor, driving under the influence, struck a woman and her child with a car in Venice.”
Despite his narrative, he did not charge the minor with driving under the influence. His office did not respond to a request for comment Wednesday.