An 8-year-old Ohio boy drove the family van to McDonald’s, with his 4-year-old sister riding shotgun, because the kids had an overwhelming desire for some cheeseburgers, police said.
The child maintained the speed limit and executed a perfect left turn into the drive-thru lane, where he came to a stop at the window and placed his order.
“It was remarkable,” East Palestine Police Officer Jacob Koehler told InsideEdition.com Wednesday. “He got him and his sister to McDonald’s without hitting anything or running any red lights."
The boy took money from his piggy bank to finance the fast-food adventure, and lifted the vehicle’s keys after his father went to bed early and his mother nodded off on the couch.
Police received two calls from pedestrians about a little boy driving a big van, Koehler said. The officer arrived at the McDonald’s around 8 p.m. Sunday, just as the boy was pulling up to the drive-thru window.
"He said he and his sister looked up how to drive on YouTube,” Koehler said. "They waited until mom fell asleep and grabbed her keys."
They drove a mile to Mickey D’s, stopping at four intersections along the way. They’d already had dinner, but the boy told police, "Me and my sister really wanted a cheeseburger," Koehler recounted.
The boy was able to reach the pedals by standing up while driving.
Koehler was stunned that such a little boy was able to handle such a large vehicle.
"This was a one-ton work van," the officer said. "This thing was huge."
A customer at the restaurant recognized the children and called their grandparents. Police called their parents, and all of the relatives hurried to the restaurant.
"I’m not sure there are any words to accurately describe their reactions," Koehler said.
Employees thought it was a prank when the kids pulled up. "They thought the parents were in the back and it was a joke," the officer said.
The little boy certainly didn’t think it was funny when the cops showed up. He burst into tears when he grasped how badly he had messed up, Koehler said.
“He started crying when he realized he’d done something wrong,” Koehler said.
But he didn’t get into any trouble with the law, as no charges were filed. Instead, cops were impressed.
"I was expecting to get call after call about mailboxes being knocked over, stupid stuff like that,” Koehler said. “But he didn’t hit a single thing.”