Couple lead police on chase with young kids in vehicle

The driver allegedly ran over an undercover drug agent and another agent discharged a weapon

Published On: Sep 18 2013 01:15:19 PM CDT   Updated On: Sep 18 2013 06:10:37 PM CDT
HARRIS COUNTY -

Authorities said three people are in custody after an officer-involved shooting in northwest Harris County.

Those shots were fired at the Food Town on Veterans Memorial and Beltway 8. The suspect then led police on a chase with two very young children in the SUV.

It started as a joint task force undercover operation with the Drug Enforcement Agency in the parking lot of the grocery store. At some point, the suspect, driving a Ford Expedition with two children in the back seat, attempted to flee the scene and ended up running over a member of the task force.

Another agent fired a shot in the direction of the fleeing vehicle, according to sheriff's deputies.

"This guy was screaming that they were shooting out here; they got kids involved," said Franscisa Galvez.

She says she couldn't believe her eyes; she saw a peace officer shooting at a fleeing SUV with children in the backseat. She was shocked the driver refused to  stop.

"They put the kids in danger. Two little kids," Galvez said.

Authorities say the suspects took off at a high rate of speed, refusing to stop. More than a mile down the street, the fleeing SUV slammed into two cars at the intersection of Veterans Memorial and Antoine.

A witness told Local 2, "(They) ran into the median right here, axl popped, tire came off."

He says the undercover agents used their firearms to break open the windows of the SUV. Three people were taken into custody.

As for the children, ages one and three, they were crying and shaken up but not seriously hurt. They were treated by EMS at the scene until their grandparents were allowed to take them home.

"She just called me crying. Very upset they were in a car accident; if I would come over here and get them," said grandfather Elia Arriaga. "I don't know, they won't tell me nothing. They just telling me we can get the kids and that's it."

Arriaga told Local 2 that the children's parents -- his daughter and her husband -- were arrested. One other suspect was also taken into custody.

Authorities said the undercover agent who was run over was not seriously hurt and was being treated for bumps and bruises. He was not transported to the hospital and is expected to be fine.

Authorities say the suspects will be charged with aggravated assault and felony evading arrest.

Names of those involved was not immediately released by police.