Stray bullet hits Texas legislator in the head at New Year’s celebration

News
This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

WESLACO, TexasA Texas lawmaker is lucky to be alive after an apparently stray bullet hit his head during a New Year’s celebration early Sunday, authorities said.

State Rep. Armando “Mando” Martinez, D-Weslaco, said his wife had just given him a kiss shortly after ringing in the new year with family and friends, and the next thing he knew, “it felt like a sledgehammer hit me over the head.”

A bullet fragment had just punctured the top of the south Texas legislator’s head.

Martinez said he had just stepped outside a home in a rural neighborhood north of Weslaco when he was hit.

Martinez, 40, was transferred to the neurosurgical unit at Valley Baptist Medical Center in Harlingen, where surgeons removed the bullet fragment. The fragment had penetrated his skull and lodged itself into the dura mater, the top layer of the brain, doctors told Martinez.

The fragment appears to be from a .223 caliber round, said Martinez, who spoke to CNN by phone on Sunday while recovering at the hospital.

“Had it gone any further, I don’t think we would be having this conversation,” Martinez said.

Hidalgo County Sheriff Eddie Guerra said Martinez’s survival was nothing short of a miracle.

The sheriff’s office is investigating the shooting, and investigators “have reason to believe that (Martinez) was hit by a stray bullet,” county sheriff’s office spokesman JP Rodriguez said.

“There is no evidence to indicate he was targeted,” Rodriguez said.

“It was a miracle last night. I was given another chance at life and I’m grateful for it,” Martinez said.

Martinez was elected to a seventh term in November and scheduled to take the oath of office January 10.

About FOX 2 News

FOX 2 and KPLR 11 in St. Louis cover the news in Missouri and Illinois. There are over 68 hours of live news and local programming on-air each week. Our website and live video streams operate 24/7. Download our apps for alerts and follow us on social media for updates in your feed.

President Harry Truman said: “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.” That spirit is alive and well at Fox 2. Our teamwork is on display each and every day.

Our news slogan is: “Coverage You Can Count On.” We quite frankly are too busy to worry about who gets the credit. Our main concern is serving the viewer.

We go where the stories take us. Whether it be Washington, D.C when a Belleville man opened fire during a congressional baseball game practice or to Puerto Rico where local Ameren crews restored power after more than 5 months in the dark.

Coverage You Can Count On means “Waking up your Day” with our top-rated morning show. From 4:00 am-10:00 am we are leading the way with breaking news. But our early morning crew also knows how to have some fun! Our strong commitment to the communities we serve is highlighted with our Friday neighborhood shows.

Our investigative unit consists of three reporters. Elliott Davis focuses on government waste, Chris Hayes is our investigative reporter, and Mike Colombo is our consumer reporter. They work in unison with the news department by sharing resources and ideas.

We continue to cover breaking news aggressively and relied on our seasoned journalists to make a difference with the stories we covered. The shooting of Arnold Police Officer Ryan O’Connor is just one example of that. Jasmine Huda was the only reporter who had exclusive access to the O’Connor family during his amazing rehabilitation in Colorado.

Last, but certainly not least, FOX 2 and KPLR 11 are committed to covering local politics. We host debates among candidates and have the most extensive presidential election coverage. Our commitment to politics isn’t just during an election year. We produce two political shows that air every weekend.

Popular

Latest News

More News