With additional reporting by Olivia Kelleher
A woman has finally made herself known to Gardaí in relation to a hit-and-run incident in Cork city which left a young schoolboy with severe head injuries.
The development comes after a family-led campaign to track down the runaway driver gained national attention.
The woman recently presented herself at a station on Cork city's northside. Gardaí have also taken statements from accident witnesses.
In early November the family of the 13-year-old boy who sustained a head injury in a hit-and-run in Cork city called on the female motorist involved in the incident to "do the right thing" and hand herself in to Gardaí.
Speaking on local radio station Red FM at the time, Donna Duggan said she was deeply shocked to find that the motorist left the scene after hitting her younger brother Jack, knocking him off a footpath and up in the air.
The youngster landed on his head, with Donna saying that at one point his face looked like a Halloween mask it was so damaged.
The teen had to undergo emergency surgery in Cork University Hospital. He was left shaken but is recovering from the incident which occurred on October 3rd.
Donna made a public appeal for help in tracing the motorist.
"On Monday, October 3rd, between 6 pm and 6.05 pm my brother was walking with my partner's nephew near St Vincent's GAA Clubhouse, up past Blarney Road in Cork.
"He was walking across the road – believe it or not his right leg was on the pavement [when] a blonde woman driving a silver car, we are not sure of the make, clipped his other leg with her car."
"He went up into the air and hit down onto the ground."
"She briefly stopped for a second or two, took her seat belt off, but then continued to drive on up towards the road. She did not get out of the car."
"I'd say she probably felt: 'Oh my God I am after hitting a child.' Whatever happened, she decided to drive away."
Donna said she couldn't understand how anyone could cause such damage to a young boy and then knowingly flee the scene.
Family appeal for driver
The family had received permission from gardaí to make their own appeal to trace the hit-and-run driver.
"For weeks I was thinking, will I post [on social media] about this? I got permission from the gardaí to post something – I said to them that I needed to do something. He is a child. She could have killed him. And she left him for dead."
"The gardaí said I could post but not to put anything out there [that might damage any future case]."
Jack was out walking with his best friend who saw the accident unfold.
"Jack's head was the first thing to strike the road. My partner's nephew is actually Jack's best friend. He went to walk towards the silver car to say: 'You just hit my best friend.' He walked towards the car. It must have been the shock or fright but they don't have much recollection of it."
"There was also a young girl who witnessed the whole thing. She ran straight down home and got her father and I want to thank them because he came immediately to the scene to make sure my brother was OK."
"He had marks and abrasions to his knees, fingers and a massive haematoma [blood suffusion] on his forehead," Donna said.
Donna says that the size of the swelling from the haematoma on Jack's forehead left his entire face distended.
"It didn't seem that serious at first. Jack gets embarrassed and he jumped up straight away. He was saying: 'I am fine, I am fine.' But he wasn't. Jack was discharged from the emergency department but had to be brought back."
"The swelling didn't really start until the following day [Tuesday] and he began to vomit when he woke up. We rushed him back to A&E and it was the following week, actually, when it began to swell badly."
"By the day he changed – by his left eye. It was like something you would make up for Halloween. It was unbelievable – I could not comprehend how this could happen and how a woman could drive away from the scene like that? I just cannot understand it."
"I just hope that this woman is scrolling through social media and comes across my post. If she is listening, Jack had to go for emergency surgery on October 20th – he was rushed back into A&E at CUH as the haematoma started to leak and it had become very infected."
"All the doctors and nurses – and they have been in the medical profession for years – none of them had ever seen a haematoma like this in their lives."
"You have no idea of the stress and worry – there wasn't a wink of sleep had in our house."