Father helpless after 3-year-old daughter accidentally hit with lawnmower loses part of leg

Reporter: Taylor Petras
Published: Updated:
Alphonse Laforet (WINK News)

Right now a little girl is at Lee Memorial Hospital recovering after officials say her dad accidentally ran her over with a riding lawnmower.

It happened at Golden Gate Estates. The father says that she ran up behind him when he was cutting grass and caught him off guard.

We spoke to the father today, who says her leg was amputated from the knee down.

It was an evening chore turned tragic for the family. Her father, Alphonse Laforet, says his three-year-old daughter Ruth ran up from behind and jumped in front of the riding lawnmower.

“She screamed. She called, ‘Daddy, daddy, daddy.’ Then I went banged on the door to call 911,” he said.

Laforet said his daughter’s left leg from the knee down is gone. Despite the shock and the pain, the little girl never lost consciousness.

“She was trying to get up on her own. Before they came, she tried to get up. She’d get up and fall, get up and fall, get up and fall. I said to her, don’t move, don’t move,” he said.

Ruth was flown to Lee Memorial where she underwent surgery. Laforte says he hasn’t been able to see his daughter due to visitor restrictions at the hospital.

“I’m in pain. I’m in just as much pain as I know she is right now. I know she’s in pain,” he said.

A father feeling his child’s pain and helpless to take it away.

“What happened to me can happen to anybody. I would say please, next time…next time we’ll just keep our eyes…I don’t think any parents would want that to happen to any kid. You just hurt,” he said.

The Collier County Sheriff’s Office says Laforte will not face any charges.

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