Suspects Arrested in Shooting Death of 7-Year-Old Jazmine Barnes


The Harris County Sheriff's Office said Larry D. Woodruffe, 24, is the suspected gunman in the drive-by shooting of Jazmine Barnes, who was killed December 30 while driving with her family to the grocery store.

The Harris County District Attorney's Office said it will decide later whether to pursue the death penalty against either Black or Woodruffe.

Barnes was in a auto with her mother and her three sisters as they were leaving a Walmart parking lot in Houston late last month. The driver of the SUV, 20-year-old Eric Black Jr. has also been charged with capital murder.

Initially, law enforcement were searching for a white man driving a red pickup truck, after witnesses reported seeing him speed away from the scene.

"This is most likely a case of mistaken identity", said Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez at a Sunday news conference.

Family and friends gathered Tuesday for the funeral of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes, where faith and community leaders called for unity and change. Woodruffe was believed to be the shooter while Eric Black, Jr., 20, drove the auto from which the fatal bullets were fired.

Investigators said they believe the gunman believed he was targeting someone else when he started shooting.

Court records did not list an attorney for Woodruffe.

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Washington, 30, was shot in the arm, while Jazmine's 6-year-old sister was hit by shattered glass.

Jazmine was killed riding in a vehicle with her mother and three sisters more than a week ago.

Texans star DeAndre Hopkins donated his $29K check from last Saturday's game to support her family.

Jazmine's short, white casket could be seen covered in flowers as pallbearers rolled it into the church ahead of the funeral. But while the latter quickly admitted to his involvement in the drive-by attack, Woodruffe was initially booked into the Harris County Jail on felony drug possession pending further investigation, officials said. Purple was Jazmine's favorite color and many of those at the service were dressed in purple. Please do not be unhappy just because I'm just outside of sight.

"I'm telling you, every time I see one of y'all reach out for me, I can hold my head up", she said.

Jazmine's mother and father were the first to speak at the funeral, and both of them started by expressing gratitude to the church and community.

"I just want to believe that all of us will be better, that all of us will work harder, all of us will strive to make this world a safer place for our children", said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner.