A woman has been charged with criminally negligent homicide after police say she ran over her 3-year-old son during a game of “chicken" in Houston.
Surveillance video from June 11 shows Lexus Stagg, 26, backing up her 2006 Lincoln Navigator as her three children chased after it. She then switched gear and drove forward, striking the boy and trapping him under the right front tire, according to a statement Friday from Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg.
Stagg then continued to drive forward and ran over the toddler again with the back right tire, Ogg said.
“Every parent has an obligation to protect their children, even from themselves,” Ogg said. "Cars aren’t toys, and playing chicken with your kids isn’t a game.”
Houston police responded to the scene and paramedics took the boy to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead. Stagg, who police said showed no visible signs of intoxication, was questioned and released pending further investigation.
Stagg, who initially told police she thought she hit a speed bump, was arrested Thursday, according to the district attorney. She faces up to 10 years in prison if she is convicted.
“You should be playing Peek-A-Boo with a 3-year-old instead of forcing him to try and dodge a 5,600-pound deadly weapon,” said Sean Teare, chief of the district attorney's vehicular crimes division.
Child Protective Services told KTRK-TV that two of Stagg's children were taken from her and placed with a relative in 2013. Her other two children seen in the video have now been placed with relatives as well, KTRK-TV reported.