A Georgia man took aim at a pesky armadillo this week, but the bullet he fired hit his mother-in-law instead.
that Larry McElroy, 54, fired his 9mm pistol on Sunday evening, at which time the bullet bounced off the armadillo's leathery shell, hit a fence, then traveled "through the back door of his mother-in-law's mobile home, through a recliner she was sitting in, and into her back."
Carol Johnson, the 74 mother-in-law, was injured and taken to the hospital, but her injuries were described as non-life-threatening.
"Just the circumstances, just all the way around, the whole situation was unusual," said investigator Bill Smith of the Lee County Sheriff's Office.
"She was walking around on her own power and talking. It didn't appear to be too severe. They took her to Phoebe North [hospital]," he added.
Armadillos are abundant in the American South, and many counties encourage people to shoot them, trap them, or drive them away with lawn treatments that kill their food sources — mainly bugs. Like rodents, armadillos can spread disease.
"I really think if they're going to shoot at varmints and whatnot, maybe use a shotgun," said Smith, "with a spread pattern with a lot less range."
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