A Texas woman has been arrested after she opened fire on a loose dog and the bullet ricocheted into her son’s abdomen, according to the Houston Police Department.
The child, 5, was taken to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition. His injuries were not believed to be life threatening. The incident took place Saturday afternoon in a suburb northeast of Houston.
Angelia Mia Vargas, 24, was charged with deadly conduct with a firearm, police said in a news release on Tuesday. She allegedly shot at a dog across the street three times with a small-caliber pistol, and one of the bullets ricocheted and struck her son.
Neighbors who saw the incident told ABC13 that Vargas, her son and another family member were riding bikes down the street when the dog ran out.
Police said she fired across the road and in the direction of two occupied houses.
The owner of the dog, who did not wish to share his name, told ABC13 Houston that his puppy is a 6-month-old boxer named Bruno. A doorbell video from his home showed the moment Bruno ran outside, with the owner in pursuit, before the sound of three shots rang out.
Bruno was grazed in the leg. Bruno’s owner was issued a citation for allowing the dog to run loose.
He told ABC13 he feels bad about what happened to the little boy and has had nightmares about it.
“I just heard everybody screaming and yelling and guns,” he said of Saturday’s shooting.
“There could have been different ways you could have handled that,” he added. “She just ― didn’t even ... didn’t aim or nothing, just started shooting.”
Vargas has reportedly been released on bond.
The incident comes as Texas, which has some of the most relaxed gun laws in the country, is poised to make it legal to carry handguns without a license.
Gov. Greg Abbott (R) has pledged to sign the bill, which has passed the Republican-dominated Legislature and was headed to his desk last week.
The measure would remove the requirement for Texas residents to obtain a license to carry a handgun if they’re not prohibited by state or federal law from possessing a firearm. Under current law, Texans who wanted to carry a handgun had to undergo a background check and training in order to obtain a license.