Pair arrested in connection with north Houston drive-by shooting

Two more suspects on the loose

Author: Phillip Mena, Anchor/Reporter, pmena@kprc.com
Published On: Aug 29 2012 11:06:22 PM CDT   Updated On: Aug 30 2012 12:02:47 AM CDT
North-Houston-Shooting-Arre
HOUSTON -

Two men were arrested this week in connection to a drive-by shooting in north Houston that left four people injured, Houston police said.

Jose Ayala and Samuel Garcia are charged with two counts of aggravated assault.

Two other men, Angelo Miller and Juan "Johnny" Espinoza, also believed to be connected, remain on the loose, police said.

No one was killed but there were several children inside the apartment at La Casita Apartments, when it was attacked July 14.

According to police, it all began a week earlier, when Angelo Miller approached an apartment where three women lived with their children and tried to sell drugs. A friend of the women then got into a fight with Miller after he refused to leave.

After losing the fight, police said, Miller, Ayala and Garcia returned the following week, looking for revenge.

"They were terrorizing these people just for standing up to them," Houston Police Dept. Investigator Isaac Duplechain said. "For not letting them sell drugs here, for trying to do the right thing."

According to police, the men drove by, shooting about a dozens rounds at the apartment. Four people, including two teenagers were hit. A 1-year-old girl sitting in her walker was nearly hit.

"My daughter was sitting in front of the door in her walker and a lot of the gunshots hit inside of her walker," the baby's mother said. "Thank God that she wasn't hit."

Officer Duplechain said, "(The baby) was directly in the line of fire. They easily could've killed her. It's actually kind of miraculous that they didn't."

"I look over at the door and my nephew was coming in the door and he's got blood squirting everywhere and there's still gunshots," another woman said. "You don't come back and shoot up somebody's house. Especially, when they knew there were kids inside that house.

According to police, Miller's uncle Juan "Johnny" Espinoza continued to terrorize the victims even after the attack.

"(Espinoza) found us at a corner store and pulled out a gun and pointed at us all," the victim said. "My nephew had just gotten shot and he pointed a gun to his head."

According to police, Miller and Espinoza are also suspected in a number of auto thefts. Anyone with information on their whereabouts is asked to call police.