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College student says he wrapped shirt on his head to stop bleeding after drive-by shooting

Posted at 4:44 PM, Nov 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-08 17:55:27-05

Leo Perez Junior just got out of the hospital after spending three days in intensive care. A bullet struck his head in a drive-by shooting in Seminole Heights. 

RELATED: Drive-by shooting injures college student, raises worries in Seminole Heights

"It was so random. It was crazy," said Perez Jr.  "I am very lucky. One very lucky guy." 

The person who shot him is still out there. That's why the 19-year-old is sharing his terrifying ordeal.

Home from college, Perez said a friend asked him to pick her up from Ybor City. But then as he made a right on Nebraska avenue, he "saw the car following me and I thought it was a police officer."

He started to pull over but someone started firing a gun. Tampa Police said the suspect fired at least five gunshots into Perez's car. One went through the Perez's back window.

"I turned back, you know to look back, and my head rest was just red. It was completely covered in blood. That was probably the scariest thing," said Perez Jr. 

He spent three nights in intensive care and while you see only a small mark through his hair where the bullet struck, the damage is severe.

"I saw a shirt behind me and I grabbed it and wrapped it around my head so I wouldn't bleed out. I don't know why, I think I saw that in movies," said Perez Jr.

Doctors said the impact caused bruising in his brain and internal bleeding.

He can't go back to his classes at St. Leo University for the rest of the month.

His focus now is to get healthy. And while police said it's not linked to three open murders in Seminole Heights, Perez still can't help but wonder.

"The thing is it was right in the area," said Perez Jr. 

But he'll let police do their job and also hope for justice.

"I just hope they catch them," said Perez Jr.