A disqualified driver left an eight-year-old boy for dead after hitting him with his mum's car.

The youngster was "catapulted into the air" after being struck by a grey BMW being driven by Anthony McKenna.

The boy, who lived in Bacup, Lancashire, suffered horrific brain injuries and had to be airlifted to Manchester Children's Hospital, Lancs Live reports.

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Preston Crown Court heard how McKenna, 34, drove away from the crash before calling his mother, saying: "I’ve taken your car and hit a kid. I’m going to top myself."

At around 6.30pm on June 24, the schoolboy had been riding his scooter along Newchurch Road in Bacup, with his mum.

McKenna was at the wheel of his mother's car, which he had taken without her consent.

Witnesses described seeing the grey BMW driving at high speed and erratically in the moments before the crash.

The scene of the crash on Newchurch Road, Bacup

As the boy and his mum reached the traffic island, McKenna ploughed into the child, sending him flying in the air.

His mum said: "My next memory is seeing my boy in the road. He was unconscious and not moving.

"I could hear myself screaming. I was shouting ‘help’ over and over."

Passers-by stopped to help and emergency services rushed to the scene.

The BMW was later found in Todmorden with front end damage.

At the hospital, scans showed the youngster had suffered multiple bleeds to his brain and swelling to his jaw.

He was admitted to the paediatric high dependency unit and had a device inserted into his skull to monitor pressure to his brain.

As a result of his injuries, the boy has suffered behavioural changes and is likely to be affected in his cognitive development, Jane Dagnell, prosecuting, told the court.

McKenna was arrested and admitted driving while disqualified, driving without due care and attention, driving without insurance, failing to stop after an accident and causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

His lawyer Brendan O'Leary, said at the time of the collision he was suffering with mental health difficulties which may have affected his decision making in the aftermath of the crash.

He said he showed "genuine remorse" and as a father of young children, would have to life with what he had done for the rest of his life.

In a victim impact statement, the boy's mum said her son was "a wonderful, happy boy with lots of friends".

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She said: "I wish it had been me that collided with the car. I feel like I should have been able to stop it.

"I hate the driver for not stopping. He left us in the road, for all we knew, to die."

McKenna has a lengthy criminal record and has previously been to prison for motoring offences, Ms Dagnell told the court.

Recorder Graham Lowe, sentenced McKenna to 24 months in jail and banned him from driving for four years and eight months.

He must take an extended retest if he wants to get behind the wheel again.