A Family Sought Revenge Against a Tormentor. They Shot the Wrong Man, Police Say.


Luis and Florinda Argueta had been fed up, based on court docket paperwork.

Their son, Joe Argueta, 19, had been feuding with one other teenager and his mates who had been harassing the household for weeks, slashing their automotive tires and capturing at their home in Houston, the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and a lawyer for the youthful Mr. Argueta stated.

Florinda Argueta, 39, hatched a plan: The household would keep up all evening, anticipate the teenager and his mates and “deal with them,” based on a report filed by a Harris County prosecutor.

Late on Monday evening, Ms. Argueta’s brother, Margarito Alcantar, waited close to the finish of a road in an SUV, prosecutors stated.

At round 11:30 p.m., a dark-colored Dodge that the household believed belonged to one in all their harassers pulled up close to the Arguetas’ home and the household pounced, the report stated. The SUV blocked the Dodge from one facet and Ms. Argueta pulled up behind it in her Honda sedan.

When the driver of the Dodge tried to flee via a yard, Luis and Joe Argueta and Mr. Alcantar started chasing the automotive on foot. The youthful Mr. Argueta held a bat and his father wielded a gun, based on the report.

The driver, Eddie Reece Clark III, 29, was shot in the torso and pronounced useless at a hospital.

He had by no means even met the household earlier than that evening, based on legislation enforcement officers.

“Seems like a tragic case” of mistaken identification, Sheriff Ed Gonzalez of Harris County said on Facebook. “Now, four are charged in murder.”

The prosecutor’s report stated that “all four defendants actively participated in the plan to chase” Mr. Clark down a public highway, block his path, then assault him with a bat and a gun.

“Eddie Reece Clark III was a neighbor that lived on an adjoining street and was merely driving home when he was accosted by the defendants,” the report stated.

Mr. Clark’s household declined to remark. Joe Argueta was launched from jail after he posted $50,000 bond on Wednesday. His mom was launched on $20,000 bond.

The police stated they had been nonetheless on the lookout for Luis Argueta, 45, and Mr. Alcantar, 29. Ms. Argueta declined to present the police contact info for her brother and stated she didn’t know the place her husband had fled, prosecutors stated.

Ms. Argueta’s lawyer, Christopher Sharkey, declined to remark.

David Bires, a lawyer for Joe Argueta, described the teenager as an electrician’s apprentice who needed to give up working in April after he had knee surgical procedure. Joe Argueta has no prior felony historical past, Mr. Bires stated.

“He didn’t shoot anybody,” Mr. Bires stated. “He is not guilty of murder.”

He stated that the Argueta household “had been harassed mercilessly over the last few weeks.”

The feud gave the impression to be between the youthful Mr. Argueta and the new boyfriend of his ex-girlfriend.

“Complaints had been made to the police,” Mr. Bires stated. “No action was taken.”

Deputies had come to the Arguetas’ house seven occasions in the previous three weeks, Sgt. Ben Bell, a member of the Sheriff’s Office murder unit, told reporters after the shooting.

Someone had shot at their home at the least twice and tires had been slashed in the driveway, Sergeant Bell stated. “It was an ongoing disturbance,” he stated.

The Sheriff’s Office referred questions on the complaints to the Precinct 4 Constable’s Office, a native police company. A spokeswoman at the workplace stated the Sheriff’s Office would have been in control of investigating the Arguetas’ complaints.

Sheriff Gonzalez stated the Arguetas believed that the man harassing them drove a black Dodge Charger. Mr. Clark was driving a darkish grey Dodge Challenger.

After he was shot, Mr. Clark crashed his automotive into a tree and tried to run away however quickly collapsed on the floor.

The mom and son gave conflicting variations of what occurred subsequent.

According to the prosecutor’s report, Ms. Argueta approached Mr. Clark as he was on the floor, tapped him with a bat and requested “Who sent you?”

The youthful Mr. Argueta initially advised investigators that he had shot at the automotive however later stated that it was his father who fired the weapon, based on the report. He advised the police that he, his father and his uncle caught up with Mr. Clark after he collapsed on the floor.

Joe Argueta stated he requested Mr. Clark who had despatched him. “I didn’t do anything to you,” Mr. Clark replied, based on the prosecutor’s report.

When the police arrived, they discovered Mr. Clark on the floor, nonetheless alive. He was flown to a Houston hospital and died two hours later.



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