Family of Boy Who Crashed Motor Bike And Died Call it a ‘Tragic Accident'

Arlington police are continuing their investigation into why an 11-year-old boy crashed a dirt bike into a brick mailbox and died.

Demarion Levi's family says it was Levi's first time on the large dirt bike, and they had warned him for days to not ride the bike with the other neighborhood children.

Levi's family says they are saddened and frustrated by the lack of witness cooperation.

Family members say they understand it was a tragic accident, but they want closure and to know what happened in the moments before the crash that caused Levi to lose control.

They also want to know who owns the bike.

"No one wants to talk to police, so I don’t have a clue right now. We don’t have a clue just yet," said aunt Latoya Standifer. "We don’t know whose bike is it. Several guys around here ride the bike. We don’t know who owns it."

Levi lived with Latoya Standifer for the last six months ever since the boy moved back from Waco.

"He told my mother yesterday he was going to learn how to ride the motor bike and we all told him 'no, do not get on that bike,;" she said. "And he said 'no, it’s okay they’re going to teach me.' And my mom said 'no, do not get on that bike, Damarion.'"

Police say so far they've been getting conflicting stories from both children and adult witnesses. Some report that Levi lost control after swerving to avoid another girl who ran out into the street. Others reported that another child playfully pushed Levi when he passed by on the bike, causing him to lose control.

Police say Levi hit a 10-year-old female friend in her knee right before the deadly crash. The girl suffered a knee injury and was taken to the hospital, but is expected to be okay.

Officers believe several home surveillance cameras may have video showing the crash, but residents have not been cooperative.

"There may be three homes in that area that have video cameras that could help our investigation," said Arlington Police Lt. Chris Cook. "Emotions were running high last night, and we went to one home and the owner said his camera wasn't operational. And two other homes didn't answer the door. So we'll go back to that neighborhood and see if we can get more answers today."

On Wednesday, police returned to the neighborhood to try and get home surveillance video. Detectives also interviewed about 10 juvenile witnesses to get more information. The ages range from 7 up to 12.

"The younger kids, they saw what happened, and they're clearly still shaken up by it. They're traumatized. He was their friend. And so these are very difficult interviews for our detectives," said Cook.

"Everyone so far is saying it's a 'community bike', so to speak, where one kid leaves it in his yard for a night or two and then some other kid takes it for a day," Cook said. "So we don't know who actually owned the bike. But it's something we think is important to know, and we're working to find out."

Levi's family grieved outside his home.

'He always had jokes. He made you laugh. He was like that spark in the room, the light," said uncle Jacoby Gay. "I haven’t stopped thinking about it since it happened."

Levi loved football and was signed up to start a summer football camp in DeSoto next Monday. It’s all he could talk about ever since he graduated from the fifth grade last week, his family said.

"He was a kid, but I mean, he had a grown person’s demeanor. He wasn’t scared of anything, and that’s one of the things I loved about him," Gay said.

Police say Levi wasn’t wearing a helmet, and investigators estimate he was going close to 30 miles per hour at the time of the crash.

“[The family] told him he was too small; but like I say, he always made his own path. He was determined to ride that motorcycle. And he did. And it didn’t turn out for the best,” Gay said.

He was with a group of about 10 to 12 neighborhood kids--roughly the same ages--and they were playing in the street.

Today, Gay is haunted by the last words he heard his nephew say.

"I just miss him. I spoke to him a couple hours before and he told me he was going to learn how to ride a motorcycle today," Gay said. "I told him not to get on that bike. I told him he wasn’t big enough to get on that bike."

Police say at this point they’re not looking at criminal charges. The bike was not "street legal" and shouldn't have been ridden on a public street, but police say it appears to be a tragic accident at this point.

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