A 16-year-old South Bay girl was recovering Thursday from serious injuries she suffered when she stepped on a lit firecracker — an accident that could result in criminal charges against the youth who set off the recreational explosive device.
The victim was walking home from school in the 1400 block of Santa Diana Road in Chula Vista when she saw a boy toss what she thought was a burning leaf onto the ground in her path shortly before 3 p..m. Wednesday, police said.
Trying to smother the flame, the Otay Ranch High School student stomped on the device, at which point it detonated.
Medics took the victim to UCSD Medical Center in San Diego, where she underwent surgery for significant trauma to her right foot, police said.
Officers located the boy who had tossed the device, believed to have been a flat, triangular firecracker. After questioning him and a friend who had been with him at the time of the incident, investigators concluded that the boys had not acted maliciously and hadn’t realized anyone had gotten hurt.
The one who had been in possession of the device told police he had gotten it from a third youth, who apparently had obtained it legally in Arizona.
All forms of firecrackers and explosive devices are illegal in San Diego County.
Upon completion of their investigation into the incident, police will submit their findings to the District Attorney’s Office for consideration of possible criminal charges.
Possession of fireworks in California can constitute a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the circumstances of the violation, officials said.
–City News Service
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