SPARTANBURG COUNTY, SC (FOX Carolina) - Troopers with the South Carolina Highway Patrol report a toddler has died after being hit by an SUV Wednesday evening in Spartanburg County.

The Spartanburg County Coroner earlier confirmed that their office had been called to a fatal accident along New Cut Road. 

According to troopers, the accident took place around 6:08 p.m. near Ballenger Road and Moores Farm Road. 

SCHP later released details just before 8 p.m. Troopers say the toddler was trying to cross New Cut Road when they were hit. The driver of the Toyota SUV was driving south on the road when they struck the boy.

Spartanburg County coroner Rusty Clevenger later identified the boy as Julian Nichols, age 2 and 1/2. Clevenger says Julian was pronounced dead on the scene, and a forensic exam is being performed.

Troopers report the driver was not hurt and was wearing a seat belt. However, the collision is still under investigation using the MAIT team.

FOX Carolina spoke with Julian's mother, Odessa. Through tears, she told us what she felt hearing the terrible news about her son.

"I just fell to my kness," she said, further telling us the shock felt "Like my heart had been ripped out."

Odessa says Julian's four-year-old sister is scared and doesn't want her mom to leave. Odessa says his sister knows now her brother is an angel watching over her.

We were also told Odessa's sister, Julian's aunt, saw what happened and got him out of the roadway after he was hit. She says her sister is upset and not in a good place emotionally considering what she witnessed.

A GoFundMe for Julian's funeral expenses has been started.


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