Teen charged with capital murder in deadly shooting appears in court

SPRING, Texas – An 18-year-old was shot Tuesday in an attempted robbery in Spring, deputies said.

Authorities said that, with the help of surveillance video, they identified and arrested Julian Velarde, 17, and Roderick Alexander, 17, in connection with the shooting.

Velarde and Alexander are charged with capital murder.

Authorities said they are cooperating with the ongoing investigation.


The victim, Diego Andrade, was shot inside a car in the 4400 block of Adonis Drive, near Naples Drive, the Harris County Sheriff's Office confirmed to KPRC2.

Prosecutors said Velarde contacted Andrade through Instagram to buy marijuana.

Velarde admitted to police that he shot 18-year-old Andrade in the head, investigators said. The victim's girlfriend, who was there, told police that Velarde had contacted her boyfriend to buy marijuana.  

They set up a time to meet. Investigators said both of the suspects, their friend and the victim's girlfriend met Andrade inside his car in the 4400 block of Adonis Drive for the transaction. Investigators said Andrade then drove them to a nearby store to get cigarettes, then dropped them back off, investigators said.

VIDEO: Velarde's court appearance

According to court documents, Velarde pulled out a handgun, told Andrade he was being robbed and shot one time in the head. 

After the shooting, Velarde and Alexander ran off.

Investigators said Alexander admitted that they planned to rob Andrade all along. Both are charged with capital murder.

Velarde appeared in court on Thursday. He is being held without bond.

Alexander is due for a court appearance on either Thursday or Friday.

The suspects attend Spring High School. 

Spring ISD released a statement that read, "We’re incredibly saddened by the tragedy that occurred Tuesday night. Our heart goes out to the Andrade family who lost their son. We are also pained to know that the two young men accused of causing this tragedy were students in our district. Our administrators, counselors and teachers are providing support to students as needed."

The district said Velarde and Roderick will not be eligible to return to school even if they are released on bail.

Andrade's family set up a GoFundMe account to help with expenses.