The shooting took place March 3 when Daisha Smalls was pumping gas and she saw police sirens, she said in a news conference Tuesday. Her son, Legend, was in the back seat of the vehicle. Smalls said a man then got into her vehicle and told her to give him the car.


“I wouldn’t give him my car because I let him know that I have a child in my car and that I would not leave my car without my son,” Smalls said through tears. Smalls said she was sitting in the car when the man jumped in and police were right behind them.

“Before I knew what happened they were already shooting at my car and I was just scared for my son’s life,” Smalls said.

A family photo of Legend Smalls and his mother, Daisha Smalls.

Houston police had a different telling of events, according to a March 4 statement from Executive Assistant Police Chief Troy Finner. Smalls was not in the car when shooting took place, Finner said.

The 30-year-old man in question was a suspect in two aggravated robberies who was already being chased by police when he jumped out of a car he crashed during the chase. The suspect — who was armed with a gun — then entered Smalls’ car.

The man refused to drop the weapon, officers fired several shots at him and he died at the scene. The baby boy was also shot, Finner said.

Finner said he was not sure whether officers at the scene knew the baby was in the car, but they gave the baby and suspect first aid.

The officer who fired the shot that hit the baby is a 15-year veteran of HPD and is “deeply concerned” about the baby and his mother. He has been placed on administrative duty while the investigation continues, Finner said.

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