Police have said the incident is understood to have been an accident (Image: ABC)
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A nine-year-old boy has been left in a critical condition after allegedly being shot by his dad by mistake.
The horror accident happened at around 11pm on Friday when the dad was driving the boy home in Houston, US.
He got the weapon out when he spotted another car which he believed was pursuing them but managed to make it back safely, according to local reports.
Once they were at home the dad allegedly tried to put the gun back in its holster but it discharged, shooting his child, who was standing nearby, in the chest.
He raced his son to a nearby fire station to get help. From there, medics took the boy hospital where he remains battling his injuries.
The horror accident took place in Houston's Fifth Ward
The youngster is thought to be in critical condition but likely to survive.
Whether their car was actually being followed remains unclear.
Local news channel KTRK reported that the dad was under the impression that another driver was behind them.
The boy is recovering in hospital, reports KTRK.
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Houston police have said that the father is not expected to face any charges as law enforcement accepts the shooting was accidental.
The dad is said to be cooperating with a police investigation while his son recovers at Texas Children's Hospital.