MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The mother of a woman shot Thursday night while driving on Poplar in East Memphis says her daughter was caught in the crossfire between two other cars.
She called it her worst nightmare, saying her daughter was alone, driving home from dinner with friends in a busy retail area when she was hit by two bullets.
“I feel better now, I get to see her," the woman said of her daughter. "It was a very long night. We got here at 11 and didn’t see her until 6 o' clock this morning. She was in surgery.”
Police arrested Marvin Lewis, 22, and charged him with aggravated assault and reckless endangerment, police said Friday.
Officers were on the scene at the busy intersection of Poplar and White Station around 9:30 p.m. Thursday.
Police said the woman was driving east on Poplar when she was shot. Officers also found bullet holes in another car and a UPS delivery truck, as well as two rifle casings and 11 spent .45-cal. bullet casings.
Witnesses reported a red vehicle, possibly a Dodge Charger or Chevy Camaro, was driving east on Poplar when it turned south on White Station and sped off. They also reported a dark-colored SUV.
The victim was taken to Regional One in critical condition, but was upgraded to non-critical condition by Friday morning, police said.
The victim's mother said her 24-year-old daughter was in the ICU and was in good spirits, but had two bullets in her that are too risky to be removed.
“She was clearly just an innocent bystander. She was just caught, unfortunately that one car between the two morons firing at each other,” witness Richard Kraft said.
“There’s cars flying everywhere. Why would you do that? It’s senseless," the mother said.
Officers found Lewis and another man identified as a possible suspect when they responded to a shooting call at St. Francis Hospital. Officers said the two had been dropped off at the hospital by an unknown person.
Police are continuing to investigate.
Kraft said he was sitting on the patio at Starbucks Thursday night when he heard a loud popping sound.
"Sounded like a muffler, like a bad car," he said. "Then we started hearing a lot more — like a ‘dot dot dot dot dot’ sound.”
He soon realized those were gunshots and he saw a red car and black SUV firing back and forth at each other.
"I’m assuming when they were firing, because they weren’t aiming, because they were just sticking guns out and shooting, that she just got caught,” he said.
According to the witness, the unsung hero in all of this might've been a Starbucks employee who raced outside when the accident happened and administered emergency aid before paramedics got there.
WREG went to the address listed for Lewis. A neighbor put his aunt on the phone. She said he doesn’t live there anymore, but said that her nephew was also shot.
"He’s the victim,” his aunt said.
The mother of the bystander said her daughter is still not up and walking but she has been laughing and making jokes. It might be a week before she gets out of the hospital.
"Here is my daughter and it’s like a nightmare, like a dream. It’s unreal,” she said.