SAN ANTONIO (KSAT/CNN) - A Texas deputy is recovering from a gunshot wound suffered while trying to stop a teen from stealing his personal vehicle.
The deputy was off-duty when the 16-year-old suspect was allegedly in his car Saturday morning.
“One of his family members let him know that his vehicle – it appeared that somebody was inside the vehicle. The brake light was on. The family members saw a hand inside the car,” Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar explained.
Although wounded and in pain, the off-duty deputy was determined to stay true to the sheriff’s office’s mission to serve and protect the community.
"The deputy was able to stay in the fight and held onto that suspect until such time as SAPD (San Antonio Police Department) arrived and took him to custody.
Investigators don’t believe the deputy was targeted, however, the neighborhood may have been.
"It appears that this is not this suspect's first scrape with the law and it appears this morning, by some of the property in possession of the suspect, it looks like he's been running around doing this throughout the night," Salazar said.
At the scene, investigators recovered the teen's backpack with the stolen property.
According to neighbors in the area, crime has been increasing, but the shooting still comes as a shock. As they say, years ago, it used to be a close-knit neighborhood where they knew everyone in the area.
"We were raised here and when we see something, when I see something like this, I feel like maybe it's one of my family, you know, that got hurt or somebody broke into their house," neighbor Linda Ramos said.
While the deputy underwent surgery, investgators processed the suspect was at the scene after they spotted blood on his clothes.
"He's in the custody of our deputies. We'll be taking him to CID at some point to take a statement from him and then, of course, to juvenile,” Salazar said.
Deputies said the teen could be facing serious felony charges, but his name and mugshot won’t be made available unless he’s charged as an adult.