Austin police charge new suspect in fatal Thanksgiving Day shooting  


Austin police have accused an 18-year-old of killing one man and wounding another in a shooting in North Austin on Thanksgiving Day.

Edgar Perez-Gamez was booked into the Travis County Jail on a murder charge Saturday in connection with the death of Samuel Charlez, according to an arrest warrant affidavit.

Charlez was one of two men who were shot in a parking garage at 9616 N. Lamar Blvd. on Nov. 23.

Witnesses told police that they were hanging out in the garage with a group when a blue SUV drove up around 11:40 p.m.

As Charlez and the other victim approached the SUV, the driver opened fire. Friends rushed both of the men to a hospital after the shooting. Charlez, who was critically injured, was later flown to St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center, where he died from his wounds on Dec. 6.

The other man was hit in the arm.

Austin police initially pinned the killing on 32-year-old Hector Guajardo-Garcia, who was arrested on Nov. 30 on two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

Homicide investigators got involved after Charlez died and uncovered additional information that led them to clear Guajardo-Garcia of the charges, and instead look into Perez-Gamez.

The affidavit said investigators ran the victims through a police database and learned that they were both linked to drug deals near Rundberg Lane and Lamar Boulevard, the affidavit said.

The affidavit said two men came forward to Charlez’s mother and told her Perez-Gamez was the shooter, and that he lived just around the corner.

The report said Charlez’s mother drove over to Perez-Gamez’s house and saw a blue SUV that witnesses reported seeing during the shooting.

Officers got a search warrant for the SUV, and contacted Perez-Gamez’s mother, who told them that her son had confessed to the shooting.

The affidavit said he Perez-Gamez told her he drove through the parking lot to avoiding having to stop at a traffic light, and was flagged down by the victims.

He said he drove up to them thinking he knew them, but soon realized he did not recognize them.

Perez-Gamez’s mother told police her son said one of the men punched him in the face, and that he believed one of them was reaching for a gun, so he shot at them, the affidavit said.

“Although Edgar has stated that he was defending himself, he never made any attempt to contact police that night or over the past two and a half months to explain himself,” the affidavit said. 

The report said Perez-Gamez was on probation for aggravated robbery, and had been arrested several times before for robbery, assault, possession of a controlled substance and evading arrest.

He was in Travis County Jail on Monday with bail set at $250,000.


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