Winter Haven, Florida -- A young child was struck by a mini-van while walking to her school bus Wednesday morning.
According to Polk County Sheriff's deputies, it was around 7:15 a.m. when 7-year-old Vanessa Perez's school bus was stopped at the intersection of Johnson Avenue East and Ellison Parkway in Haines City.
Witnesses told officials the bus had its stop signal arm and flashing lights deployed as Vanessa and one other child crossed the street to get on board, but a man in a white, Dodge Caravan attempted to pass by anyway.
The driver, identified as Glenn McCarthy, drove the van directly into the 7-year-old girl, and reportedly sent her flying several feet in the air until she landed in the roadway.
One witness said it did not look as if McCarthy intended to stop, and that she even tried honking her horn to get his attention before he struck the girl.
Perez was airlifted to Arnold Palmer Children's Hospital in Orlando where she is in stable condition, and is expected to recover.
McCarthy, was arrested and charged with willful reckless driving and has been booked at the Polk County Jail. He will also be cited for failing to stop for a school bus.