It was the third incident in the past two days, and the fifth since the start of school in Petaluma, that involved a vehicle and either pedestrians or bicyclists in a crosswalk, Sgt. Ken Savano said.
Police said 69-year-old Rosinda Gallegos and her two grandchildren were on their way to La Tercera Elementary School at about 8:10 a.m.
They were walking in a marked crosswalk on Leslie Way at the intersection of Crinella Drive when they were struck by a 1985 Cadillac that turned left onto Leslie Way from Crinella Drive, Savano said.
Gallegos was thrown onto the hood of the vehicle, and the 8-year-old boy and 6-year-old girl were knocked to the ground, Savano said.
They were driven to a hospital for treatment of minor injuries, Savano said.
The driver, an unlicensed and uninsured 17-year-old boy and a student at Casa Grande High School, was driving four other high school students who are affiliated with a street gang, Savano said.
The driver was on probation orders that prohibited him from associating with gangs, Savano said.
The four passengers fled the accident scene but were identified and interviewed later today at the high school. The four teens said they left the scene because they did not want the driver to get in trouble for associating with gang members, Savano said.
The driver said he was talking to a pedestrian he knew as he turned left onto Leslie Way and did not see the Gallegos and her grandchildren in the crosswalk, Savano said.
He was cited for being unlicensed and uninsured and for failing to yield to a pedestrian in a marked crosswalk before being released to his family, Savano said.
His car was impounded for 30 days, and police will ask the juvenile probation department to cite him for a probation violation, Savano said.