2 Texas cheerleaders shot as they accidentally tried to enter the wrong car

A 25-year-old suspect, Pedro Tello Rodriguez, has been arrested (Representational)


Two cheerleaders were shot in a Texas parking lot after one accidentally tried to get into the wrong car, part of a spate of similar incidents in the United States this week.

Police said the gunman fired several shots at the girls, seriously injuring one.

The shooting occurred early Tuesday, days after a black teen was shot dead after ringing the wrong doorbell in Missouri and a young woman was shot dead after arriving at the wrong address in New York state.

In Texas, four cheerleaders – reported to be teenagers – were using a grocery store parking lot to carpool to practice. They had returned after midnight to collect their vehicles.

Heather Roth said she got out of her friend’s car and opened what she thought was her vehicle and opened the door, before realizing there was a man sitting inside. She then returned to her friend’s car.

“I saw the man get out the passenger door and I rolled down my window and I was trying to apologize,” she said in a video shared by local ABC affiliate KTRK.

“He just threw his hands up and then he pulled out a gun, and then he started shooting at all of us.”

The Elgin Police Department said a 25-year-old suspect, Pedro Tello Rodriguez, has been arrested and charged with deadly conduct, with more charges likely.

Police said a cheerleader, identified by local media as Payton Washington, “suffered serious injuries and was taken by helicopter to a hospital.”

A GoFundMe campaign — which had raised nearly $70,000 as of Wednesday morning — said that “Payton was shot twice and was fatally wounded. She is stable in the ICU and will have a long recovery.”

KTRK said Ms. Roth suffered a serious wound and was treated.

The girls commute approximately 360 miles (580 km) three times a week to participate in a typical competitive cheerleading squad.

Fatal shootings are a regular occurrence in the United States, a country of nearly 330 million people and an estimated 400 million guns.

Ralph Yarl, 16, was shot twice after ringing the wrong bell while trying to pick up his twin brothers in Missouri. The suspected shooter, an elderly white man, has surrendered to authorities.

And a 20-year-old woman in New York state was shot and killed by a housekeeper Saturday night after she showed up at the wrong address with three other people while trying to locate a friend’s house.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)