Texas Police Hunt For White Male Who Fatally Shot 7-Year-Old Black Girl
Police have described the suspect as a white male in his 40s with a beard, and he was wearing a red hoodie at the time.
WALLISVILLE, TX — Police in east Harris County, Texas, are asking the public for help catching the suspect who fatally shot a seven-year-old girl on Sunday morning.
Jazmine Barnes was shot while riding in a car with her mother, LaPorsha Washington, and her three sisters, according to the Harris County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies said the family of five was leaving a Walmart parking lot in the 15400 block of Wallisville around 7 A.M. when an unidentified man in a red pickup truck pulled up and opened fire.
Police say that Jazmine was killed instantly.
Her mother suffered a gunshot wound to the arm and was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. The two other sisters in the vehicle were reportedly unharmed.
"I heard shots start firing, and they came through my window, broke my glass, and hit me in my arm," Washington told KTRK.
"They sped off in front of us, and the truck slowed down and continued to fire as he was in front of us … he intentionally killed my child for no reason. He didn't even know her, he didn't know who she was."
Police have described the suspect as a white male in his 40s with a beard, and he was wearing a red hoodie at the time, according to KHOU.
The sheriff's office also released a photo of the pickup truck involved at a press conference.
The HCSO has asked members of the public who live in the area around Wallisville Rd and E. Sam Houston Pkwy to review their surveillance video for footage of the suspect or the red truck.
“Investigators ask all residents in the Wallisville Rd/E. Sam Houston Pwky area to review security video from the morning of 12/30. Looking for a red 4-door pickup involved in the fatal shooting of Jazmine Barnes, age 7,” the sheriff’s office tweeted on Monday. “Call 713-274-9100 or @CrimeStopHOU at 713-222-TIPS #hounews.”
Sheriff Gonzalez appealed to the public for help at a press conference, urging citizens to come forward with “any piece of information” that may be relevant.
Jazmine's father also spoke during the press conference in an emotional plea to the public. "Help me and my family get justice for my daughter ... she was loving, caring, passionate with people, she was sweet, just an innocent young girl." he said.
"I urge you, whoever did this, you know who are, please turn yourself in," said Major Jesse Razo on Sunday. "Because we will be looking for you, we will locate you, and we will find you."
Police have not released information on a possible motive for the crime, but according to KHOU, the shooting appears to have been random.
“It’s our belief it was totally unprovoked, whatever it was, and we’re leaving no stone unturned,” Sheriff Gonzalez said.
Vice News tweeted on Monday that journalist Shaun King and civil rights leader Lee Merritt have put together a $35,000 cash reward for information that could help lead to an arrest.
Police have asked anyone with any information to call HCSO at (713) 221-6000 or Crime Stoppers at (713) 222-8477.