Civil Rights Lawyer Believes Jazmine Barnes' Killer May Have Targeted Other Black Families
The reward for finding the killer has now increased to $100,000.
As Blavity reported previously, a manhunt is currently ongoing for the white man who fatally shot 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes outside a Houston-area Walmart parking lot Sunday morning. Now, a prominent civil rights lawyer has alleged the suspect may be guilty of past racially motivated attacks in the same neighborhood.
In a Twitter thread published on January 2, lawyer Lee Merritt stated there are connections between the Barnes shooting and other unsolved shootings in the area.
1. This isn’t the first time that a black family was ambushed by an unknown white male. The exact same thing happened on August 30, 2017 to A’Vonta Williams and his girlfriend’s grandmother. https://t.co/IGANfzI65u— S. Lee Merritt, Esq. (@MeritLaw) January 2, 2019
The lawyer wrote another Black family was attacked in a similar fashion by a unknown white male in a silver pick-up truck 2017 and that months before a white man in a car matching that description attacked another group of people. Given the fact all of the attacks were carried out in the same manner in the same area, Merritt believes one man is responsible for all three.
He also tweeted a reward of $35,000 is being offered to anyone with information that leads to the shooter's capture.
Activist Shaun King has been keeping a watchful eye on the case, and has helped to raise a $100,000 reward for anyone who successfully identifies the assailant.
Rally on Saturday.— Shaun King (@shaunking) January 3, 2019
Funeral on Tuesday.
We should not have to be doing any of this, but here we are.
Our reward for the arrest of the killer of 7 year old Jazmine Barnes is now $100,000.
Email me today at firstname.lastname@example.org with tips and leads. Strictly confidential. pic.twitter.com/IVrLajKJVm
Speaking with KHOU, Jazmine's older sister Alxis Dilbert described the shooter as "a white man with blue eyes, a thin build and no beard."
She went on to say that the suspect "looked sick," with visibly sunken cheekbones. Alxis, 15, said she also recalls making eye contact with the suspect shortly before he fired shots.
"It was like a look into his car. You know how when you’re driving and y’all make eye contact and look back? It was like that," Alxis said. "He was white and he had blue eyes and that was it, because he had a hoodie on. I couldn’t see his hair. Nothing like that."
Shortly after her description, a new composite drawing of the possible assaulter was released.
BREAKING!!!!!! Composite sketch of #JazmineBarnes KILLER!!!! witnesses say this guy murdered Jazmine Barnes on Sunday as her family drove on the E. Sam Houston Pkwy feeder/ at Wallisville Rd. Thin white man, 30's-40's, in a red truck. Call 713-221-6000 #JusticeForJazmine #khou11 pic.twitter.com/UPDCofPIDc— Melissa Correa (@KHOUmelissa) January 3, 2019
Speaking for the first time since being released from the hospital, LaPorsha Washington, Jazmine's mother, recounted the tragic events. She told KHOU she can't help but wonder whether or not she did anything to the killer to cause him to target her family.
"I replayed the moment in my head over a million times," Washington said. "Did I cut this man off? Did I make a wrong turn in front of him? Did I stop him from getting out of the Walmart, for whatever he was doing? Did I do anything wrong to cause this man to fire shots at my car? ... I didn’t do none of that. He fired at us for no reason — none."
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