DENVER — A drive-by shooting Friday afternoon has left a family shaken after a bullet went through their vehicle's windshield and lodged itself just inches away from their kids' car seats.
"It's very hard as a mom to not go there in your head to think ... what would have happened if that bullet had just gone a few more inches and the other direction? What would my life be like?" the mother, who did not want to be identified, told Denver7 Sunday.
She and her two young kids were headed home Friday afternoon near Quebec Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard. It's a drive they always make, except this time the mother noticed something was off.
"I saw a car driving very erratically, so that caught my attention right away," she said.
Then, moments later, someone pulled out a gun and started shooting. One of those bullets hit the windshield of the family's SUV.
"Next thing I felt was glass just kind of spraying me," the mother said. "I yelled for my kids just to get down, and, obviously, they were screaming, and we were all so scared."
It wasn't until officers arrived that she learned the bullet had lodged itself in the backseat, just inches away from her kids' car seats.
A Denver mother says she & her kids were caught in a drive-by shooting Friday afternoon on their way home from school. A bullet went through the windshield & lodged itself just inches away from her kids' car seats.— Pattrik Perez (@PattrikPerez) March 13, 2022
At 5, why she says it's time to move her family. @DenverChannel pic.twitter.com/AdIpK96BC0
"As I tried to sleep on Friday night, I was so incredibly thankful that we weren't hurt," she said.
After sharing the story with others, she's been told she was in the wrong place at the wrong time as a way to comfort her. But she wants to remind everyone this wasn't the case.
"I wasn't in the wrong place, and it wasn't the wrong time. I was in my neighborhood. I was picking my kids up from school timely on a Friday. I'm a taxpaying citizen, you know? I am entitled to be in my neighborhood and to be with my children safely," she said.
Today, the family remains shaken up about what happened. The mother is still too afraid to get back in the car and take the same route home.
"This isn't fair to the people that live in Denver, to have to live with the level of crime that we've been experiencing," she said. "Should I buckle my kids in differently to their car seats so that they can duck down the next time that this happens? I don't want to think that way. I don't want to live my life wondering what's going to happen to me next."
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But one thing is certain: it's given her the push she needs to get her family out of the city.
"Based on the level of the rise in the crime in this city, we have to leave. I cannot guarantee my children that they're safe," the mother said. "What I cannot do is control the uncontrollable acts of humans that have no respect for human life and for children's lives specifically, so I have to leave."
ALERT: #DPD is investigating a shooting at Martin Luther King Jr Blvd and Quebec Street. One victim sustained non-life-threatening injuries. Expect delays in the area. Investigation is ongoing officers are working to develop suspect information. #Denver pic.twitter.com/aYHc6xGTLI— Denver Police Dept. (@DenverPolice) March 12, 2022
Denver Police said on Friday one person was injured in the shooting and had minor injuries. Denver7 reached out Sunday to find out whether anyone has been arrested or if there is a description for a suspect or vehicle but has not received a response.