HOUSTON -- A Houston mom behind the wheel of an SUV that hit and killed her 3-year-old child is now being charged with criminally negligent homicide, according to officials.
The charge was brought against Lexus Stagg in connection with the June 11 incident at the Grand at Westchase Apartments on Richmond Avenue near Wilcrest Drive.
Houston police originally called the incident an "unfortunate accident."
"The 3-year-old child ran behind her vehicle as she backed out of her parking spot," HPD's Lt. Thurston Roberson said at the time.
However, further investigation, including a review of the surveillance video, shows it was not an accident at all, according to prosecutors.
"She was in her car and her children were playing in front of her in the parking lot. She put her car into reverse, and drove at least 100 feet," said prosecutor Sean Teare, describing what can be seen clearly on the video.
"The three kids followed her, followed the car, at which point, the defendant put her car into drive and drove toward her children as they were running toward her. The two older children were able to get out of the way, and tragically, the younger child was not and was run over by two of her tires."
Neighbor Walter Turcios saw the incident on June 11. He says he was saddened by it, but unfortunately, not surprised.
"I felt bad, because those parents, they were never there, they were kind of negligent. (The kids were) always out here without supervision," he said.
CPS also confirmed to ABC13, ABC7's sister station, that in 2013, two of Stagg's older children were removed from her and placed with a relative. She then had three more children. One, Renfro, died at the hospital the night he was run over. The other two kids have now been placed with relatives as well.
IN COURT: Lexus Stagg appears before judge for criminally negligent homicide charge
Stagg was arrested Thursday and appeared in Harris County Probable Cause Court Friday.
A magistrate judge set her bail at $1,500 despite prosecutors requesting a $50,000 amount. She posted bond late Friday afternoon.
If convicted, Stagg could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison.
Given the circumstances, the district attorney's office believes the parent was needlessly playing around.
"Every parent has an obligation to protect their children, even from themselves," said District Attorney Kim Ogg said. "Cars aren't toys and playing chicken with your kids isn't a game."