‘There was no warning:’ Woman struck in head by stray bullet on New Year’s Eve in Lake Mary

No one knows where the bullet came from, police say

LAKE MARY, Fla. – Lake Mary police are investigating after they say a woman was hit in the face with a bullet on New Year’s Eve.

Kat Wilson tells News 6 she was sitting in her neighbor’s backyard with some friends when she suddenly felt pain on the left side of her face.

[TRENDING: Newborn surrendered in Safe Haven Baby Box | Person of interest ID’d in Mount Dora double-homicide | Biggest shows coming to Central Florida stages | McDonald’s Coke tastes better. Here’s why | Become a News 6 Insider]

“There was no warning,” Wilson said. “All of a sudden, I just felt like I had been hit with a metal object the size of, like, a softball.”

Wilson was celebrating the holiday with friends in the area near Country Club Road and Crystal Ridge, 20 minutes before midnight. She says her ear started ringing, and she reached for her cheek.

“I got the loudest tinnitus that you have ever heard, kind of like in movies when there’s an explosion,” Wilson said. “Immediately felt a lot of blood, and said, ‘I got to get to the ER.’”

A picture of Kat Wilson shows a bandaged bullet wound. (Kat Wilson)

Wilson said the pain was immediate, but she didn’t learn what had actually hit her until she got to the hospital.

“They said it looks like you have something lodged in your jaw, and so they did a CT scan and it became pretty evident there was a metal, cylindrical item lodged right next to my jaw,” Wilson said. “They said that’s a bullet and you need to call the cops.”

Lake Mary police confirmed the object was a small caliber bullet. They said it’s possible it was fired outside of city limits, up to a mile and a half away.

“Just remember that every bullet that you fire, you’re responsible for. That means that if it strikes a person or anything else, you create some damage, you are responsible for that,” Claudia Umana with the Lake Mary Police Department said.

Detectives are asking anyone with information about this incident to contact the Criminal Investigations Division at (407) 585-1321.

Wilson guesses someone fired celebratory shots into the air. She worries about what could have happened.

“The kids were out front playing when this happened, which is also very scary,” Wilson said. “We had been doing fireworks in the backyard an hour earlier, and I am trying not to think of all the ‘what if’ scenarios.”

She hopes her story will serve as a reminder that there are real impacts.

“Even if somebody thinks that they’re just in a field shooting a gun, it can travel far, and you know, impact people without you knowing it.”

Get today’s headlines in minutes with Your Florida Daily:

About the Author:

Catherine, born and raised in Central Florida, joined News 6 in April 2022.