WHEATON, Md. (WJZ) –Police say a SUV driver may have been fleeing in fear of a group of men attacking him when he hit one of them–a 17-year-old boy who is now fighting for his own life.

Police say a black SUV hit the Wheaton High School student at the Stoneymill Square shopping center parking lot on Thursday night in what was originally believed to be a hit-and-run.

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The teen may have been hit because of an earlier fight between two groups at a nearby Burger King.

A short time after the collision, three people arrived to the Wheaton police station to report a vandalism and assault. A 21-year-old man told officers that he and his two friends, an adult male and an adult female, were eating at the Burger King located at 12265 Veirs Mill Road. The man then explained that he and his friends saw a group of men watching them from outside of the restaurant. When the 21-year-old man and his friends left the restaurant, the group of approximately five to ten men began running at the male and his two friends. The 21-year-old male and his friends got into his vehicle, a 2002 Chevrolet Avalanche. The group of males began to throw rocks and attempted to get inside of the vehicle. Fearing for his safety and the safety of his two friends, the 21-year-old man says he drove his vehicle out of the parking lot. The driver stated that he was unaware that he had struck anyone.

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Detectives examined the striking vehicle and observed evidence that rocks had been thrown at the vehicle and that a pedestrian had been struck.

Because this is an ongoing investigation, the names of those involved in this collision are not being released at this time.

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