The Mexican national was detained in the small Texas town of Cut and Shoot, just miles from the residence in Cleveland, Texas, where the shootings occurred, according to CNN. He is said to have taken fire at five of his neighbors following a request for him to cease firing his rifle so it would not disturb a baby who was asleep inside of the home.
“We asked him to be quiet ’cause my baby was scared,” Homeowner Wilson Garcia explained to ABC13 Houston, adding that the suspect was informed they would contact the police.
“I never thought that he would shoot … He went room to room, looking for people.”
“I have no words to describe what happened,” the father said. “We are alive but there is no life. I was able to escape by a miracle.”
The Daily Wire reported that Texas Governor Greg Abbott promised a reward of $50,000 for tips leading to the suspect’s apprehension, just after San Jacinto County Sheriff Greg Capers pledged a $55,000 reward, along with the FBI’s offer for $25,000.
“Our hearts go out to the families and loved ones of the five victims that were taken in this senseless act of violence,” Abbott said during the announcement. “I continue working with state and local officials to ensure they have all available resources to respond to this horrific crime. I thank the men and women in law enforcement who are tirelessly working to ensure this criminal is caught and brought to justice.”
Despite acknowledging that the alien had been in the U.S. illegally and was consequently deported at least four times since 2009, CNN reported that his status of U.S. residency is currently unknown.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre reacted similarly, making no mention of the suspect’s status as an illegal alien or previous deportations.
She did, however, characterize the event as yet another example of “gun violence” in the U.S. and urged Congress to take political action, presumably against weapons such as the “powerful AR-15 style rifle” that she claims was used to carry out the horrific event.
KJP kicks off the briefing by discussing the shooting in Cleveland, Texas. Of course, there was no mention that the suspect was an illegal alien and wouldn't have been able to kill anyone if not for Biden's refusal to secure the border. pic.twitter.com/6e1uEbEsqf
— Kevin Tober (@KevinTober94) May 1, 2023