Child, 4, narrowly escapes injury in Manatee drive-by shooting

MANATEE -- A 4-year-old boy narrowly escaped injury after bullets early this morning shattered the rear window of a car in which he had fallen asleep, according to the child's mother and the Manatee County Sheriff's Office.

Monica Salas' 4-year-old son, Jose, was asleep in the back of her Nissan Altima when its back window was struck. Bullets also pierced two walls and a window inside the family's home in the 400 block of 60th Avenue Drive West.

Salas and her son had just arrived home from the movies at 12:35 a.m. when gunfire erupted.

A stray bullet also struck a residence about a block away in the 300 block of 60th Avenue West, according to the sheriff's office. No one was hurt there, either.

It was the second drive-by shooting within two hours and in the same 15-block neighborhood.

In the earlier shooting, someone fired several gunshots into a home on the 6000 block of 11th Street East, at 10:20 p.m. Sunday, according to a news release.

The shots were fired from a sedan traveling south on 11th Street East, the report stated.

Two residents from the home had been standing outside when the incident occurred, but were not injured. The house and one of the vehicles parked in the driveway were struck, the report added.

There was no indication in reports whether investigators believe the shootings were connected.