Student with special needs dies in golf cart crash at high school in Orange County

A high school student with special needs died after suffering major injuries in a golf cart crash on campus, school officials confirmed. 

The incident occurred at El Modena High School in Orange on Monday and school officials are calling it a "tragic accident." 

The boy has been identified as 15-year-old Manny Perez.  

A one-on-one aid attempted to stop Perez from operating a golf cart when he crashed, the Orange Unified School District confirmed in a statement.

Parademics arrived at the school and took him to a local hospital where he died Monday evening. 

In part, the statement from the Orange Unified School District reads:

"Orange Unified School District can confirm that a student was involved in a crash of a district golf cart on campus. He sustained major injuries and was immediately taken to the hospital by paramedics, as the parent was notified. No other students were involved in the accident. We were devastated to learn that he died from those injuries in the hospital...We are cooperating with law enforcement to determine the exact circumstances surrounding the accident."

The lawyer for the family says it’s unclear what happened. 

“He was on the severe end of the autism spectrum, everyone knew that, the school knew that and that’s why it is completely unacceptable that they left him unattended where he would be in a position to do this kind of thing”, said attorney Robert Glassman. 

Glassman says the school has told the family conflicting stories that don’t add up. 

“We intend to hold them responsible, we want justice for Manny. And we want to make sure this doesn’t happen to anyone else again,” he added.   

Students described him as fun, energetic, and caring. A letter sent to parents said they have dispatched a team of school psychologists who would be available for students close to the victim. 

 FOX 11’s Tracey Leong contributed to this report