Father of Westlake teen hit by vehicle hopes to see change from tragedy

Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 10:29 PM CST|Updated: Dec. 1, 2022 at 10:57 PM CST
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Westlake, LA (KPLC) - The father of the Westlake teen struck by a police unit last month is speaking out and hoping for change.

“He liked to work out, every day, “Christopher Shotwell said. “Exercising, skateboarding, he was living the dream.”

It’s a parent’s worst nightmare, and a reality for Shotwell and his family.

His son, 14-year-old Aiden Shotwell, remains in the hospital after being struck by a Westlake police unit along Westwood Rd. while attempting to cross the road in Westlake last month.

His father gave us an update on how he is doing.

“I’ve been told by the doctors that there is so much damage to his brain stem that he is not going to be able to survive on his own,” Shotwell said. “If he comes home, he’ll be on a respirator system and a feeding tube. I would have to 24-hour care him.”

The Shotwell family lives in the neighborhood across from Pinederosa Park. We’re told Aiden and his friends frequent the park, and that’s why they were crossing the road.

“That’s their little clique,” Shotwell said. “That’s just where they go.”

State Police said the accident happened around 4 p.m. That’s just about the time our cameras took this footage, and as you can see, there is constant traffic with no sidewalks or crosswalks.

Aiden’s father hopes the tragedy will bring change.

“I mean something should have been done to this road a long time ago, but it wasn’t crucial until now, but they are talking about putting in a sidewalk system and a crosswalk,” Shotwell said.

Police Juror Randy Burleigh said he is talking to the Department of Transportation and Development about putting crosswalks in the area where the accident happened.

Friends of Aiden’s family have started a GoFundMe to help with medical and other expenses.

GoFundMe for Aiden Shotwell