One-year-old Atticus was sitting right next to his mom on the swings when she saw a drone heading their way, she told the Des Moines Register.
“I’m just trying to take my kids to the park and have a normal day,” Atticus’ mom, Cassandra Roberts, told WTHR.
But “normal” disappeared as the drone headed toward her and her son.
“You hear their drone swoop over to the swings,” Roberts told KWQC. “It was a good sized drone and it had the four different propellers.”
Then she saw the drone bump into one of the swings and hit her baby in the face, the Register reported.
“I would think my kid falls off the playground before he gets hit with a drone,” Roberts told KWQC.
After he was hit, she saw that Atticus was bleeding from his face.
A photo of Atticus shows deep cuts on his cheek and upper lip, in addition to some other scratches on his nose and chin.
After Atticus was hit, the drone operators apologized to Roberts, she told KWQC, but in a rush to get her son to the emergency room, she didn’t get their names or contact information.
While at the hospital, Atticus received three stitches in his cheek and two in his lip, the Register reported. Roberts then filed a police report, KWQC reported.
Now, about a week later, the Bettendorf Police Department is hoping to identify who was flying the drone at about 11 a.m. on July 24 at Crow Creek Park.
“At that time, the one year old boy was injured when two individuals, who were operating a drone, nearby, lost control of it,” the department posted to Facebook.
Police said the individuals — described as two white males in their twenties — were flying the drone near the soccer fields before it headed into the playground area. They may have been with an older couple in their fifties or sixties.
Drone operators are required to have city permission before operating one in Bettendorf’s parks, police Cpt. Justin Paul told the Register.
“If you’re going to operate them, you need to operate them in a safe manner away from individuals and make sure you’re in compliance with whatever local ordinances are out there,” he told the newspaper.
Roberts told WTHR that Atticus will be OK.
“He’s pretty tough, but not tough enough for a drone,” she told the station.