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MIDVALE — In some ways, Apollonia Lambertus blames herself for being run over in her driveway by her 17-year-old son.
"I was furious at first, but then I realized I probably did something wrong. (I) probably didn't get (him) the help that he needed at a certain time or let him do something that he wanted to do. I don't know," she said Tuesday from her hospital bed.
But Lambertus, 39, also realizes, for the safety of herself and her other sons, that she can no longer have the 17-year-old in her house and that there needs to be serious consequences for his actions.
"I really hope he gets the help that he needs," she said. "I'm just tired of people just (sugar-coating) everything that he does. And I think this was my last straw. I don't think I'll be able to do it anymore. I won't have him back home."
On May 4, Lambertus' 17-year-old son took her Dodge Journey SUV parked in the family’s driveway near 7700 South and 500 East, without her permission, and then ran over his mother after she tried to stop him.
"I told him, 'Get out of my car! Get out of my car!' And he just looked right at me, evil in his eyes and everything. It just scared me," she said.
Even when Lambertus was lying on the ground screaming and unable to move, her son walked right by her, she said.
The reason for the alleged assault? Lambertus said her son wanted to go to a party. She told him after she made dinner she would drive him over. But as she was cooking, she heard her car start. Lambertus ran outside and saw her son — who does not have a license, does not know how to drive and doesn't have the "mental capacity" to drive, according to Lambertus — behind the wheel.
I'm just tired of people just (sugar-coating) everything that he does. And I think this was my last straw. I don't think I'll be able to do it anymore. I won't have him back home.
–Apollonia Lambertus, injured mother
"It doesn't surprise me because he's done this before. This one was the worst one. He just looked at me, right in the car, and told me that he's going and he's not going to take no for an answer. And he just took off," she said.
The boy allegedly accelerated away from the home, made a right turn up on a sidewalk and crashed into a mailbox and light pole before hitting a parked SUV. He then ran from the vehicle but was later captured by Unified police officers.
Lambertus suffered numerous broken bones, including both arms, ribs and her pelvis, in addition road rash. She hoped to be released from the hospital to a longer term care facility on Thursday.
"They think I might fully recover, but there are things I won't be able to do anymore," she said.
Lambertus said she likely will not be able to lift anything over 5 pounds again. She said that would affect her job and likely leave her unemployed.
Lambertus' son was charged Wednesday in juvenile court with two felonies and several misdemeanors, though specific details about the charges were not available.
Lambertus said her son has had drug, alcohol and anger management problems in the past, has run away for days at a time, and has been through several treatment programs. According to Lambertus' boyfriend, the teen also was taking medication for schizophrenia.
But no one knew how deep is problems were, she said.
"It just hurts. It just really hurts that he doesn't care. He doesn't care for any human life at all except for his own," Lambertus said.
This time, Lambertus said she hopes the justice system will come down hard on her son and take the incident seriously to prevent such an incident from happening again.
"He needs to have a serious charge. For years he's been getting slapped on the wrist," Lambertus said. "Right now he thinks that everything's a joke.
"I don't want another person to go through what I did," she said.