Sgt. Reyes, Officer Brown honored for effective investigation that resulted in killer’s confession

Officer Brown & Sgt. Reyes with HPOU’s Whitaker

The Houston Police Officers Union recognized Sgt. Walter Reyes and Officer Carsten Brown  of the Major Assaults and Family Violence Division as Investigators of the Month for their prompt and thorough investigation of a shooting that resulted in prompt charges against a suspect who later confessed to murder.

His confession came in a jail house interview with the two investigating officers.

Sgt. T. K. Richardson of the Major Assaults and Family Violence Division detailed what happened on the nightshift last Nov. 13 on South Gessner Road.

Richardson said a shooting happened at a restaurant about 1:27 a.m. after two males got into a disagreement with a third male in the presence of several witnesses.

“The suspect later approached the victim and fired several rounds from a handgun, causing multiple projectile strikes to his upper torso,” Sgt. Richardson said. “Another patron observed the suspect walking toward the front door of the business with the pistol in his hand and prevented him from causing further harm and leaving.”

The second victim was shot one time in the chest while attempting to subdue the suspect.

Sgt. Reyes and Officer Brown were assigned to investigate, immediately taking note of the fact that both complainants were seriously wounded, suffering wounds to the upper torso. They immediately learned that the suspect was a stranger to the victims.

“Due to their training and experience, although medical personnel initially expected both complainants to survive their injuries,” Richardson explained, “Sgt. Reyes and Officer Brown conducted their callout investigation consistent with a murder investigation because of the severity of the complainants’ injuries.”

The scene was processed by a Crime Scene Unit that resulted in the recovery of shell casings, projectiles, DNA evidence, 40-caliber pistol and video surveillance. The video clearly shown the suspect was the aggressor and shooter during this incident.

Richardson said, “The suspect, found to be highly intoxicated, was transported and booked into the Harris County Jail for two counts of Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon.

“On Nov. 13, one of the victims was pronounced dead by hospital staff at 8:45 a.m. Sgt. Reyes contacted the Harris County District Attorney’s Office and refiled one of the Aggravated Assault charges to an upgraded charge for Murder.”

Initially, the suspect was not interviewed prior to being booked into the jail due to being highly intoxicated. Reyes and Brown went to the jail to interview him to get his side of the story. He was Mirandized and talked to the investigators.

“He admitted to shooting the deceased victim because he felt he was verbally slighted,” Sgt. Richardson explained. “Reyes and Brown obtained a DNA search warrant for the suspect and requested a DNA comparison between the buccal swabs from the suspect and recovered firearm.”

Richardson described the work of the two investigators “fully embodies the values of the Houston Police Department and I commend them for a job well done. Actions like this cannot go unnoticed and should be highlighted as an example for other employees in the future.”