A deputy sheriff shot his teenage daughter after mistaking her for an intruder – then crashed his car as he rushed her to hospital, authorities have said.
Police in Virginia said Sergeant Easton McDonald grabbed his privately-owned gun after the home security alarm went off at about 3.30am on Tuesday.
On seeing a shadowy figure in the garage, he opened fire before realising it was his 16-year-old daughter returning home after sneaking out earlier in the night.
“He figured someone had broken into the garage and his family was upstairs asleep,” said Captain DonnieLang, of the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office.
“Then he hears her voice and recognises that it’s his daughter.”
Sgt McDonald, a13-year veteran of theLoudoun County Sheriff’s Office, called 911 to say he was taking the wounded youngster to hospital.
But on the way helost control of his vehicle and hit a barricade.
Capt Lang said an ambulance arrived at the scene and took the girl to hospital, where she is in a stable condition.
She did not suffer any further injuries in the crash,Capt Langadded. SgtMcDonald also escaped injury.
A spokesman for the LoudounCounty Sheriff’s Office declined to comment.