A nine-year-old boy killed in a hit and run on the Spanish island of Tenerife has been described a “happy go lucky wee boy”.
Carter Carson, from Newtownabbey near Belfast, had been on holidays when he was hit by a car. He was leaving a shopping centre with his family in Adeje in the south of the island on Thursday.
Despite efforts to save him, the Abbots Cross Primary School pupil died in hospital on Friday.
In a statement posted on Facebook, the school said: “The whole school community of Abbots Cross Primary is deeply saddened by the sudden loss of our P5 pupil, Carter Carson.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Carter’s immediate and wider family circle at this tragic time.”
A crowd-funding page to raise money for funeral costs has so far received donations of over £6,500.
Organiser Charlene Dinnen posted: “Carter was a happy go lucky wee boy who just loved his footy taken after his daddy and his granda. I can’t even put into words how heartbreaking this is. Sleep tight wee man.”
Newtownabbey Youth Football Club, where Carter played, have also paid tribute.
The club said on a Facebook post on Saturday: “It is with deepest condolences and heavy hearts we as a club are saddened to hear of the tragic passing of young Carter Carson this morning.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and his friends at the club. YNWA [You’ll never walk alone].
“The chairman told me he’d been playing football since he was 5-year-old and that the whole club is heartbroken.”
A car believed to have been involved in the crash was found abandoned a few miles from the scene. Two men have been arrested.
The incident occurred at approximately 8.30pm near the Gran Sur Shopping Centre on a street called Calle Dublin in Adeje, Tenerife.
One of the men being quizzed by police is believed to be a son of the registered owner of the Alfa Romeo that was seized by police. Officers confirmed on Saturday night it had been spotted by an off-duty police officer.
One said: “The man under arrest is a young man living in San Isidro in the municipality of Granadilla de Abona who investigators suspect was at the wheel of the Alfa Romeo. It was found on Friday afternoon near the scene of the hit and run, opposite Adeje football ground and near a secondary school called IES Galeon, by a National Police officer who was off-duty at the time. He alerted colleagues and sent them a picture.”
Spain’s interior ministry said in a tweet that the boy was taken to hospital where he later died.
The national police issued an appeal on Twitter, saying it was investigating the death of the boy in Adeje. “Last Thursday after he ran over him, the driver of a red car was on the run without giving him any help.”
Police released stills of a red Alfa Romeo 145. A man was later arrested following a public appeal and a search.
Local police said hours before the boy died: “Do you know who ran over a boy aged 10 and then fled the scene without helping him? The youngster is fighting for his life in intensive care in hospital.”
A spokesman for the Department of Foreign Affairs told The Irish Times it was aware of the case but had not received any request for consular assistance. "We stand ready to assist," he added. - Additional reporting PA