A young boy with autism became the unsuspecting prey to a bunch of older children who gave him a drink and then left him to die. The terrible incident left the 12-year-old boy, Ronnie Phillips, needing life support and he is now wondering why the ones he thought were his friends would do this to him.
On Friday, October 9, 2020, Ronnie and his 11-year-old brother, Jimmy decided to sneak out at night from their house in Crawley, West Sussex, in the UK. With their mother fast asleep, the boys left their house and hung out with some older children, as reported by Daily Star.
It was reported that the older children gave Ronnie a drink in a can and told the autistic boy that it was alcohol. There is still no confirmation on what the drink was but the family believes that the drink they offered Ronnie had bleach mixed with it.
After the older boys tricked Ronnie into having the drink, the boy collapsed right in the middle of the street, according to the mother’s account of the incident.
The mother, Danielle Porter, revealed that her younger son, Jimmy was traumatized from seeing Ronnie lying on the ground and he screamed for help, thinking his brother was dead. By this time, the older children had run away on seeing Ronnie fall to the ground. It was reported that these older children were out the entire night and the police found them in the morning; however, officers are yet to confirm this information, according to Sussex Live.
As Jimmy stayed beside Ronnie, a woman in the area found the terrified boy and his brother lying on the ground. She stayed with them until emergency services arrived and took Ronnie to the hospital. Once they reached St George’s in London, Ronnie was taken to the hospital’s Paediatric Intensive Care Unit and put in an induced coma.
The boy’s mother later spoke about the dangers of such incidents and about the cruel act of “leaving a child to die.”
“I just want to make people realise the dangers of drink, drugs, playing stupid games and running away leaving a child to die,” Danielle said. “Kids will be kids but this sort of stuff is just ridiculous and dangerous.”
Ronnie was later taken off life support and the doctors informed his mother that they would soon be able to discharge him.
The police have launched an investigation into the events that took place on the night Ronnie collapsed after having the drink. Meanwhile, a fundraiser has been set up for Ronnie, and his family hopes that it will help show the boy that not everyone out there is the same.
The GoFundMe page, reportedly set up by Ronnie’s grandmother, said: “This is my 12-year-old grandson who is autistic. On Friday night some older children tricked him into drinking bleach and the result was him having to be put in a induced coma! He is now awake but can’t understand why no one likes him and would do this to him when he thought they was his friends! I want to show him that people do care and are not all nasty.”
The target for the fundraising page was around $65 (£50) and so far, the page has raised close to $700 (£537) for young Ronnie.