Woman crossing Mathews Bridge shot in face with BB

Victim says it may have happened before, and she's finding a new way home

By Jim Piggott - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A woman said she will no longer take the Mathews Bridge home from work after she was shot in the face with a BB gun as she crossed the St. Johns River on Thursday night.

The woman said she was driving on the Arlington Expressway about 10:30 p.m. just east of the bridge when the BB struck her.

"I thought maybe it was a rock or bullet," said the woman, who only wants to be identified as Beth. "I was just driving home and had something impact my face."

She said when doctors told her it was a BB, she could not believe it.

Beth has a small bandage covering the wound, but she says that when it happened, there was blood everywhere. After going to the hospital, x-rays showed the BB is lodged in her jaw and will stay until it comes out naturally.

Beth said she has had training on how to handle a situation like this and kept calm.

News4Jax crime and safety expert Ken Jefferson said if this ever happens to you, try not to stop in the spot where it occurred.

“Simply because the shooter may be aiming for you, so you want to get out of there call the police and then seek medical help,” Jefferson said.

Beth said police told her it may be a group of teens that live in the area that fired the BB.

She also said this may not be the first time. She recalls her car being hit in the past but she assumed it was a rock. Now she plans to take a different route at night.

News4Jax has requested the police report that could shed more information on if officers have identified suspects or if they are connecting this incident to others.

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