Aunt who was with 5-year-old killed in hit and run talks about crash; family of driver says he panicked

Warren police have arrested a suspect in a fatal hit and run from Tuesday night - that claimed the life of a 5-year-old boy.

Preston Singleton's aunt, Rachael Draper, saw it happen. She was with the 5-year-old Tuesday evening when police say a Jeep hit the child and kept going.

"I don't feel that three meals and prison walls and a cement slab and a pillow is doing anything for my family or this situation," Draper said. "Because my nephew will never see three meals a day again. My nephew will never have a cement slab to sleep on. That was his last cement slab right there."

Preston was on his bike, two of his young family members there to witness the traumatic incident.

"My niece Juliana is 10, who saw it, her own brother," Draper said. "My son and Preston's sister (saw it happen)."

"It's like a nightmare that I'm hoping to wake up from," said Christopher Singleton, Preston's dad.

Investigators say It happened at 9:45 Tuesday night in Warren on Van Dyke near Stephens. The family said they were on their way home.

"We were crossing at a crosswalk, which is the law, which is what we were supposed to be doing," Draper said.

Warren Police Commissioner Bill Dwyer said after the 22-year-old driver hit little Preston he didn't stop, ditching the Jeep in a Taco Bell parking lot at 16 Mile and Van Dyke. That suspect is now in custody.  

"He knew it was a young child and knowing that he continued to go through and go to Sterling Heights, and go to work without any thought, compassion or sympathy toward the 5-year-old victim," Dwyer said.

The family has set up a GoFundMe HERE if you want to donate.

But the grandmother of the driver accused reached out to FOX 2 to tell his side of the story. Eleanor Brown wants the public to know that the 22-year-old works hard and has a good heart and that the family feels terrible about the tragic crash.

Eleanor Brown, the grandmother of the accused driver says he panicked after the crash.

Eleanor Brown, the grandmother of the accused driver says he panicked after the crash.

"He works at Chrysler, and all he does is go to work and come home," she said. "When my grandson called me on the phone, he said 'Gran-gran, they said I killed a 5-year-old,' he was distraught. My grandson is not a bad kid, he has no criminal record, he has no none-of-that. He's not, you know, they stereotype us. And he is not stereotype material.

"I know if he would have known he hit a kid, he would have stopped. He has a 5-year-old cousin. My family is not like that."

Brown also said her grandson left the scene because he panicked. The family is extending their condolences to that young boy's loved ones.