Witness: Laredo Police Knew It Was a Pellet Gun When They Killed Jose Garza

Guillermo Jimenez
PanAm Post
September 5, 2014


Gateway Truck Stop CFO Victor Treviño Speaks Out, Contradicts Police Narrative

An eyewitness to the police killing of Jose Walter Garza in Laredo, Texas, on Saturday has come forward to contradict the official account of events.

In an interview with local, independent journalist Hector Cubillos, Gateway Truck Stop CFO Victor Treviño said police knew in advance of the shooting that the victim was armed with only a pellet gun.

“When the police arrived, my gate guard informed the police that it was a BB gun. [The guard told police] not to take it as a real gun. It was a BB gun. He told several of the officers,” Treviño said.

Police arrived at the Santa Maria Gateway Truck Stop at around 2 a.m. local time, after receiving a call of a man with a gun. According to the police department spokesman, Joe Baeza, six officers opened fire on Garza, 30, approximately five minutes after arriving on the scene. All six have since been “temporarily reassigned” to administrative duties, while the department conducts an internal investigation.

According to the victim’s family, the injuries Garza sustained were so gruesome they have decided against burying him in a casket. Baeza would not confirm how many shots police fired, but family members say they unloaded at least 80 rounds. Garza’s cousin Andrea Martinez told the New York Daily News that he was hit so many times “he had no face.”

Victor Treviño confirmed police fired dozens of bullets at Garza in his interview with Cubillos. He added that there was so much stray gunfire, people inside the building were forced to drop to the ground and crawl their way out of the police line of fire. “These things have not been reported in the media,” he said.

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