HOUSTON -- Alarming dash camera footage shows a 12-year-old clinging to the roof of a moving SUV moments before the driver was arrested in Texas.
On Sept. 17, deputies with Harris County Pct. 2 Constable's Office responded to a parking lot takeover. According to the constable's office, the parking lot has become a hotspot for reckless behavior.
A responding deputy noticed a child on top of the car and pulled over the driver.
Victor Chavez, 20, was charged with child endangerment. According to court documents, Chavez was driving at least 15 to 20 mph
The families of Chavez and the 12-year-old are acquaintances, and the boy was invited by Chavez to tag along that night, according to the constable's office. The incident was reported to the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.
"You know how fast people are riding on feeder roads, so if that little 12-year-old would have fallen, he could have easily been run over and killed," Constable Jerry Garcia said.
Tire marks can be seen with broken beer glass and trash scattered across the shopping center's parking lot. The center's owner told our sister station, ABC13, it has been happening almost every weekend, mostly on Sundays.
"Doing their spinouts and burnouts," Constable Garcia said. "People line up on the side, and they watch them. It's a kind of entertainment for them, but they don't realize the danger involved. These aren't professional drivers; they can lose control and kill someone. It's happened before."
The business owners and employees are fed up and say it is pushing customers away, and they're forced to clean up the mess.
"Maintenance comes once a month, but this happens every week. We are the ones who have to clean it up," one employee said. "Every morning in front of our spot, we clean about 20 to 30 beer bottles."
As of Sept. 1, state law allows law enforcement to impound cars tied to street racing and reckless driving, a weapon Constable Jerry Garcia says they plan to use to continue cracking down on takeovers.
In this case, the suspect's car was not seized because the incident happened right outside the parking lot.
"We aren't playing. We will seize their vehicles, we will take them to jail, we will write tickets, tow cars, and I promise you, we will do it again," Constable Garcia said.