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Police: 2 charged in Converse shooting caught in viral video fired 40 times

Guns used connected to several other shootings, including Sept. 10 murder

SAN ANTONIO – Two men are facing charges in connection with a July shooting in Converse that was captured on video and then widely shared on social media.

Dimitri Lavalais, 24, and Carlos Romero Jr., 21, each face an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charge for the July 9 shooting in the North Hampton subdivision.

Converse police said Lavalais and Romero are two of what they think were three suspects from the shooting scene.

ORIGINAL STORY: 2 men charged in shooting caught on video in Converse, police say

A 9mm casing found in Romero's vehicle was fired from one of the two handguns used in the shooting, according to an arrest affidavit.

On Oct. 25, Lavalais evaded police in a white 2004 Kia Forte after authorities attempted to conduct a traffic stop. The vehicle was found to have three bullet holes in the roof of the car and a Glock handgun -- later found to be connected to the shooting -- was found inside, according to the affidavit.

The arrest paperwork also indicates that, between them, the two handguns are connected to five other shootings from around Bexar County, which includes the murder of Jalil Stewart that happened Sept. 10 on the city's Northeast Side.

RELATED: Dozens of rounds fired in deadly drive-by shooting, deputies say

9MM Cartridges:

  • July 8, 2018 - 8300 block of Jaybrook Drive in Converse, Texas, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case
  • July 8, 2018 - Walzem Road and Elm Trail Drive, Bexar County, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case
  • July 8, 2018 - 8200 block Glen Lark, San Antonio, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case
  • Sept. 10, 2018 - 6600 block of Highland Grass, Bexar County, Murder case
  • Sept. 14, 2018 - 4200 block of Skelton Drive, San Antonio, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case

.40 Caliber Cartridges: 

  • July 8, 2018 - 8300 block of Jaybrook Drive in Converse, Texas, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case
  • Sept. 10, 2018 - 6600 block of Highland Grass, Bexar County, Murder case
  • Sept. 10, 2018 - 16500 block of Willow Run Street, San Antonio, Deadly conduct case
  • Sept. 14, 2018 - 4200 block of Skelton Drive, San Antonio, Aggravated assault with a deadly weapon case

According to the affidavit, police were able to connect the found shell casings to the handguns by submitting them to the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network for testing.

Lt. Jeff Shook with the Converse Police Department said in a text message he could not discuss details of the other shootings due to concerns about interfering with "any other agencies (sic) investigation."

However, in an interview with KSAT earlier in the day, Shook said he didn't believe the North Hampton shooting had been the first or last time Lavalais and Romero had been involved in something like that.

"Converse, and truly Bexar County, is a lot safer not having these two individuals running around. That's fact," Shook said.

The North Hampton shooting for which the pair are facing charges happened at around 4 a.m. July 8 after an SUV with three people arrived at a home in the 8300 block of Jaybrook Drive.

RELATED: Reward offered in shooting caught on video in Converse

One of the people in the vehicle began recording cellphone video after they noticed someone trying to hide behind a bush by a wall.

Eventually, two people can be seen getting out from behind the bushes, and someone in the vehicle can be heard saying, "Oh, they have a gun" just seconds before numerous shots are fired.

While officers found 40 spent cartridges at the scene, no one was hurt in the shooting. The victims' SUV was struck multiple times and six other homes and six cars were also hit by gunfire, according to the affidavit.

The video of the incident was posted to Facebook by one of the victim's uncles, where it has been viewed 5.8 million times.

I normally don't post on Facebook but this is a true ACTION & AWARENESS post. WARNING: This is very hard to watch! It hit very close to home as I have been in this situation before. This was my 19 year old niece coming home late last night in Converse, Texas (San Antonio, Texas) to some home invaders in her bushes.. NOW JUST PAY ATTENTION TO THE RECKLESSNESS our society has come to! GET THIS TO THE MEDIA. These guys were out to MURDER anything moving last night and they have to be dealt with. This is to be treated as if they murdered everyone in the car! If you want to be active contact Converse, Texas police department (210) 658-0898 to make sure they are on their game. GET THIS TO THE MEDIA.. #dontwaitfordeath #CNN #HEADLINENEWS #ROBINMEADE #CONVERSETEXAS Police Chief Fidel Vellegas (210) 658-2322 email: pdchief@conversetx.net

Posted by Rico Malique on Sunday, July 8, 2018

Shook believes the victims just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and had pulled up while Lavalais, Romero and an accomplice were targeting another home in the area.

"I cannot confirm it, but I believe that they were going to attempt some type of a home invasion-type situation," Shook said.

The video only shows two people, who Shook said are the shooters, outside of the SUV, but police believe a third person was involved. In the video, a gold Chevy emblem and brake lights can be seen on another car in the video, Shook said, indicating someone was inside it.

In the arrest affidavit, police said home surveillance footage captures both a dark-colored sedan and a white sedan fleeing the area with their lights off.

According to the affidavit, police later learned a black 2017 Chevy Cruze was registered under Romero's name.

Shook could not say for certain whether Lavalais and Romero were both shooters or if one of them was the person inside the other vehicle.

"Whether (or not) they were the ones that actually pulled the trigger -- we do believe that to be the case -- but they were there and they were party to the offense," Shook said.

Police have an idea of who the third suspect is, Shook said, but they have not filed an arrest warrant.

Romero was arrested Thursday morning, and police said Lavalais was served his warrant while already in the Bexar County Jail on an unrelated charge.


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