A 25-year-old Robstown man is in critical condition at a Corpus Christi hospital after being shot point-blank with a 12-gauge shotgun by a man he'd allegedly had an argument with.
Robstown police Detective Martin Flores said officers responded to a call the night of June 12 from the father of 19-year-old Justin Jae Velasquez, who reported that his son had just shot someone at his home. When officers arrived at the home, located in the 900 Block of Mynier Street, they found the 25-year-old victim, Jesus Torres III, had been severely wounded by a close-range shot from a 12-gauge shotgun.
He was taken by Halo Flight to Memorial Medical Center.
Police apprehended Velasquez as he was walking along Avenue A, near VFW Post 7841. When officers arrested him, without incident, Velasquez reportedly told them he was walking to the police department to turn himself in for the shooting.
Flores said the incident allegedly stemmed from an argument between Velasquez and Torres prior to the shooting. Velasquez claimed Torres had assaulted him during that argument while the pair had been outside drinking beer, and that he only shot Torres to protect himself.
"He kept telling the officers that it was in self-defense," Flores said.
After the alleged assault, Velasquez reportedly walked into the home and retrieved the shotgun, then came back outside to confront Torres. Velasquez's father was reportedly trying to get Torres to leave to avoid any more trouble when he saw his son approaching with the weapon, Flores said.
The father allegedly stepped between Torres and Velasquez and pleaded with his son to drop the gun, even swatting it out of the suspect's hands and onto the ground, Flores said. However, when the father turned to tell Torres to leave, Velasquez allegedly picked the gun up and fired a single shot at Torres from close range into the left side of his body, Flores said.
At that point, Velasquez's father managed to get the gun away from his son before Velasquez left the scene.
"(Velasquez) got upset and went inside with the intention to get that shotgun," Flores said. "He was very upset and shot (Torres) at that point."
Velasquez is charged with attempted murder and is facing up to 20 years in prison.
Torres, as of Tuesday, was non-responsive and in the intensive care unit in critical condition and on a ventilator, after reportedly undergoing numerous surgeries.
If Torres' injuries lead to his death, Velasquez will then be charged with first-degree murder, which carries a prison sentence ranging from 25 years to life, Flores said.