An arrest has been made in the fatal shooting of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes. Suspects Eric Black Jr and Larry Woodruffe were reportedly taken into police custody Saturday (Jan. 5) without incident. Black now faces a capital murder charge.
According to court documents, the 20-year-old admitted little Jazmine’s death was a mistake.
“The source said the suspects thought the complainant’s vehicle was some other person’s vehicle that they had seen earlier in the night and that they shot the car by mistake. The source said that they did not realize the vehicle that they had shot into was the complainant’s vehicle until seeing it on the news later in the day.”
Black was the driver of the getaway vehicle while 24-year-old Woodruffe sat in the passenger seat.
BREAKING: @HCSOTexas has identified 1st suspect in #JazmineBarnes murder as Eric Black, Jr. 20. I can also confirm a 2nd suspect as Larry Woodruffe, 24 (below). He is believed to be the shooter. No connection to Jazmine or her family, per sources. https://t.co/wnaXDXVOO0 #abc13 pic.twitter.com/YsYvUSZX4g
— Jessica Willey (@ImJessicaWilley) January 6, 2019
Authorities say Black was placed in police custody after a traffic stop. and cops found marijuana in the gray Kia he was driving. Law enforcement identified Black as a suspect in Jazmine’s murder after receiving a tip and evidence that corroborated that tip.
Based on the interrogation of Black, investigators believe Jazmine or her family were not the intended targets and are victims of mistaken identity.
On Dec. 30, Jazmine, her siblings, and her mother LaPorsha Washington drove on the Beltway 8 feeder road to get coffee when a gunman opened fire. Jazmine was shot in the head while Washington was shot in the arm.
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner released a statement following Black’s arrest commending law enforcement and warning criminals.
“I want to thank the Harris County Sheriff’s Office and all law enforcement for their diligent work to identify and arrest a suspect in Jazmine Barnes’ senseless murder. The authorities worked around the clock to find the individual who is allegedly responsible for the heinous and unspeakable act of violence against an innocent child. This should serve as a warning to all violent offenders who prey on our community: The color of your skin, how much money you make – these things don’t matter when law enforcement will find you, eventually.”
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The fact that I know energy never dies gives me closure because I know your pure spirit will live on forever and continue to touch the lives of others. I love you, Jaz. Until we meet again. 💜 Huge thanks to @shaunking & @leemerrittesq . They told me and my family that they would find the person who did this to Jaz and they came through on their word like real ones do. Thank you, Houston. We all came together to get questions answered. Such a strong sense of community here. I love you, Houston. 💜 #jazminebarnes #houstontx