Two toddlers in Texas were critically injured late Thursday night after someone opened fire into their parents’ vehicle, igniting fireworks inside, police said.
Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said the “horrific scene” began with a road rage incident on Highway 249 near Ella.
Gonzalez said a family of four – a mom, dad and 3-year-old and one-year-old kids – were driving along when they got into a dispute with another driver. The two vehicles pulled into a gas station and both male drivers reportedly got out and exchanged words.
When the suspected shooter showed a firearm, the father got back in his vehicle and started to leave.
But the other man allegedly opened fire on the truck, setting off fireworks the family had just purchased.
“Their car [was] engulfed in flames forcing him to stop,” Gonzalez said in a social media post. “Some good Samaritans came to the rescue and transported the family to a community ER clinic.”
He said the shooter, who was not identified, fled the scene. Investigators said the man was driving a newer model, light-colored Ford Expedition, KHOU 11 reported.
“It is said that [the] suspect was in the company of a female and children,” Gonzalez added.
The toddlers in the vehicle sustained major burns and had to be airlifted to UTMB Galveston. Both were in critical condition Friday morning, Gonzalez said.
The mother and father were also taken to the hospital with undisclosed injuries.
The Harris County Sheriff’s Office asks anyone with information to call 713-222-TIPS.