Police say 69-year-old Dwayne Austgen shot Vidal Herrera after the 17-year-old confronted Austgen at his house in the 5500 block of Susanna Lane.
The case will likely be presented to a grand jury once authorities are done investigating, but Austgen has not been charged with a crime.
Herrera lived within walking distance on Jimbo Lane — known among some in the area as the “Hispanic street.” Austgen lives on a mostly Anglo street.
The other day when we discussed this, one of our commenters suggested I was playing the "race card." Beyond pointing out the obvious, I don't know what he thinks I was doing. This article in the Houston Chronicle is dedicated to that idea. One doesn't need to live near Mexican immigrants in Houston to know that racial tensions run deeply whether you're in the deep South or in Newark NJ.
The entire article seems like an attempt at justifying the shooting. The neighborhood had gone to hell, the young Hispanics were up to no good, especially Herrera, pet dogs had been killed, Mr. Austgen was about to be robbed.
The attitude of the Houston Chronicle is clear, and perfectly expressed by Mrs. Austgen.
A woman who identified herself as Austgen’s wife at his home said the shooting was a “tragedy and we’re sorry it had to happen.” She said her husband didn’t want to speak to the media.
What's your opinion? Is this another justified shooting, another DGU? Or is this a type of pre-emptive vigilantism? Is "walking towards him" to be considered lethal threat? What do you think about that apology from the wife, "sorry it had to happen?"
Supposedly there were lots of burglaries in and around this neighborhood. Why would that be? I thought when the thieves know the residents are armed they stay away. I thought the high percentage of guns in the home in Houston is supposed to prevent this.
My idea is that guns don't prevent anything. The fact that there are break-ins in neighborhoods like this means that guns are being stolen and transferred into criminal hands. Other than the occasional vigilante killing, "gun flow" is the main result of all those weapons.
What do you think?