While confronting an alleged robbery suspect, Oklahoma police officers opened fire and reportedly shot three innocent children during the incident. According to the mother, two of her children suffered head wounds, while her third child survived gunshot wounds to the face.
On April 11, surveillance footage recorded suspected armed robber, William Devaughn Smith, entering the back of a Pizza Hut in Hugo, Oklahoma. Smith reportedly pressed an object against the back of employee’s head and robbed the store before police arrived on the scene.
On Friday evening, detectives from the Hugo Police Department confronted Smith as he was traveling in a vehicle occupied by Olivia Hill and her four young children. According to Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) spokeswoman Brooke Arbeitman, Smith backed his pickup truck into one of the officers as he attempted to flee, while another officer opened fire at Smith.
“My 4-year-old daughter was shot in the head, and she has a bullet in her brain, and my 5-year-old has a skull fracture,” Hill recently told KXII-TV. “My 1-year-old baby has gunshot wounds on her face. My 2-year-old wasn’t touched with any bullets.”
Smith was also shot during the arrest and treated at a hospital in Paris, Texas, before being transported to a Texas jail on an Oklahoma robbery warrant. He faces a first degree felony charge of aggravated robbery.
“What happened between the contact with him and when police fired, we’re still trying to put that together,” Arbeitman stated. “The OSBI is still investigating whether he fired at police and whether he was armed.”
Both officers involved in the shooting have been placed on administrative leave. OSBI investigators have not stated whether the officers were aware that four young children were inside the vehicle before opening fire at them.
The officers were reportedly not seriously injured during the encounter.