Houston — With his hands shackled, Eric Black Jr. appeared in court Monday, facing capital murder in the shooting death of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes. The prosecutor said the 20-year-old was involved in her death, but was not the gunman.
“We believe that the evidence is pointing to Eric Black as the driver of the getaway vehicle of the shooting of Jazmine,” said Harris County District Attorney Samantha Knecht.
Black was identified over the weekend. The highly publicized drive-by shooting last Saturday led to thousands of tips. Deputies said Black admitted to his role and said he thought they’d targeted someone from a previous night’s bar brawl. He was already in custody on an unrelated charge when questioned.
“The intended targets were likely someone else but instead they fired upon LaPorsha, Jazmine and her siblings in this case,” said Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez. LaPorsha Washington is Jazmine’s mother.
Deputies are questioning a second man that Black said was with him, but no charges have been filed yet.
The Houston community rallied around the family and her mother gave emotional pleas for justice from her hospital bed as she recovered from her gunshot wound.
For Jazmine’s father, Christopher Cevilla, word of an arrest brought some closure but no peace.
“I’m hurt, I’m upset, but I’m happy that law enforcement did their job,” he said.