- Valentino Rodríguez was arrested in Houston, Texas, charged with the shooting homicide of a man.
- Rodriguez, 39, has a criminal record for car theft, drug possession and domestic violence.
- Rodríguez’s crime put authorities on edge for several hours until they were able to arrest him.
Valentino Rodríguez was arrested and charged with the gunshot homicide of another man in an incident that put authorities on edge. The Homicide Division of the Houston Police Department (HPD) arrested Rodríguez as the alleged perpetrator of the murder of Herman Smith.
Rodríguez, 39, caused a large police mobilization last Sunday, September 5, 2021 in Houston, Texas, to the point that the presence of the officers of the Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT) had to be requested in order to arrest the man who was considered armed and violent.
Valentino Rodríguez is accused of a shooting homicide
Valentino Rodríguez will face his criminal process before Judge Hilary Unger of the 248th Criminal District Court in Harris County and who has not determined when the first hearing will be. The Texas State Penal Code It details that the murder charge is punishable by a sentence of 20 to 99 years in prison for anyone who pleads guilty.
However, the legal situation of Valentino Rodríguez is aggravated because the man has a long criminal record in the Harris County for crimes such as aggravated assault with injuries, illegal possession of a firearm, possession of drugs, trespassing, carjacking, and aggravated assault on a family member, among other crimes.
They report a shooting in the neighborhood of Montrose
The legal documents of the case, consulted by MundoHispánico, detail that at 11:30 in the morning on Sunday, September 5, 2021, several calls reached the emergency number to report that on the sidewalk of Richmond Avenue, in the Montrose neighborhood, there had been a shooting.
Several HPD patrols were dispatched outside the Fat Property housing complex, 1901 Richmond Avenue, outside where distressed neighbors reported the shooting had occurred. Upon arrival, the agents found a man lying on the sidewalk very badly wounded by several bullets.
The wounded man dies in hospital due to the severity of his injuries
The HPD patrolmen who arrived at the scene requested the presence of the paramedics of the Houston Fire Department (HFD) to take the injured man to Ben Taub Hospital where doctors would try to save his life.
However, while the man was undergoing surgery in the emergency room, the man passed away as doctors fought to save his life. Through his credentials, the man was identified as Herman Smith, 42. While the man died in the hospital, HPD agents were already investigating the shooting.
The discussion of Valentino Rodríguez that ended in murder
At the crime scene, after HPD agents learned that Herman Smith had died, authorities recovered testimonies from neighbors who told them that a man who lived at the Fat Property had gotten into a very violent argument with him. today deceased. The man was identified as Valentino Rodríguez.
According to the testimonies of the neighbors during the discussion, Valentino Rodríguez went to his apartment to take out a pistol and returned to the street to shoot Herman Smith several times at point-blank range. Later, according to neighbors, the man had returned to his apartment to barricade himself in the place.
They ask SWAT agents to arrest Valentino Rodríguez
The agents of the HPD Homicide Division who arrived at the scene requested the presence of their SWAT team colleagues to go after Valentino Rodríguez, who was allegedly hiding and armed inside his apartment, according to the neighbors told the authorities.
The SWAT team surrounded Valentino Rodríguez’s home and removed the rest of the residents to protect them from a possible shooting. The agents demanded that Rodríguez leave the house without resisting. After several hours of tension, a couple of officers, covered by their colleagues, decided to enter the department.
Valentino Rodríguez managed to evade the authorities and escaped
However, when the HPD SWAT agents entered Valentino Rodríguez’s apartment, the man had already managed to escape, although the agents still do not know how he managed to circumvent the authorities’ fence on Richmond Avenue, which was literally closed by the police after the shooting. .
The alarms went off for the agents of the HPD Homicide Division who issued an arrest warrant against Valentino Rodríguez and all the corporation’s patrols in Houston within minutes already had the information of the alleged murderer and fugitive.
They capture the alleged murderer after several hours
After several hours after the shooting that Sunday, the agents of the HPD Homicide Division were able to locate Valentino Rodríguez and detained him without incident, although it is not detailed how the arrest was. The man has been facing the murder charge since Tuesday, September 7, 2021 and was taken to the Harris County jail.
Valentino Rodríguez has charges of aggravated assault with injuries against women with whom he had romantic relationships in Harris County and another in Harris County, both in the greater Houston area. The arresting officers pointed out to the judge the man’s violent history.
The long chain of gun violence
The arrest of Valentino Rodríguez for homicide is one more link in the violence with firearms in the country. The non-profit organization National Archive of Gun Violence, which fights to raise awareness about the dangers of the free sale of firearms, reports that 30,274 people have died so far this year.
Until last Sunday, September 5, 2o21 of those people who have been shot dead in the United States, a total of 13,906 were murdered and 16,368 committed suicide. 27,869 were injured. The country already experienced 477 mass shootings in the first half of the year, where several people died in the same event.
In Texas, the carrying of firearms is now free
Since last Wednesday, September 1, 2021, a new law on the free carrying of weapons came into force in Tecas. From that day on, by a law approved by the State Congress, it is legal to carry a firearm, rifle or pistol, in sight and without having received training to use it and without having permission, despite the constant deadly shootings.
Greg Abbott, the Governor of Texas, signed the new law that he called a “constitutional right” to carry weapons such as rifles, shotguns and pistols of any caliber in practically any public place. By signing his signature on the new law, the governor said he signed the “documents that instill freedom in the Lone Star State.”
The concern of the authorities about the use of weapons
The Reform of Law 1927, legal name of the new arms law in Texas, was voted in the State Congress in May 2021 and was approved with a round of 86 in favor and 62 with 2 abstentions, part of the 150 congressmen. Governor Abbot signed the law, which was his proposal, last June to make it effective until September 1, 2021.
However, some law enforcement agencies in Texas have publicly and privately criticized the decision to pass a law that according to many police officers exposes them in the first place to the dangers of firearms in the hands of people who do not they know how to handle them properly and, secondly, to the citizens.
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