Six years after the highly publicized killing of a jet-skier, Falcon Lake on the border of Mexico and Texas on the Rio Grande became the scene of another tragic shooting death, this time of a fisherman.
The incident occurred at the international reservoir just before 8:46 p.m. Tuesday, which is when the Zapata County Sheriff’s Office received a call about the shooting, according to My San Antonio.
Oscar Garza, 26, died in the boat and Javier Gonzalez, 21, was hospitalized for hypothermia. Both are from Starr County.
“Two young guys were fishing out on the lake … over by Falcon State Park,” Chief Deputy Ray Del Bosque told My San Antonio. “They were confronted by another boat … and it started escalating and the guys shot at Mr. Garza and Mr. Gonzalez.
“They fatally injured Mr. Garza, who died there in the boat. Mr. Gonzalez sped away and bullets were hitting the boat. He jumped off the boat to try to hide from the bullets and hide from the gunmen.”
Zapata County Sheriff’s Office deputies and the Texas Rangers, along with other agenices, are investigating the shooting and trying to determine whether the incident occurred on the Mexican or American side of the lake, KRGV reported. Two boats and two pick-up trucks were seized as part of the investigation.
KRGV also learned that there was a witness to the shooting in a separate boat, and that Border Patrol aerostat recorded surveillance video near the shooting.
Bosque told KRGV that the other boat involved in the incident “may have sped off into Mexico.”
From My San Antonio:
He [Del Bosque] said it’s too early to say if the shooting was carried out by cartel members who operate on the Mexican side of the reservoir. Video from a Border Patrol aerostat should show whether the shooting happened on the Mexican or U.S. side of the lake and where the boat with the gunman went after the incident, Del Bosque said.
In 2010, David Michael Hartley was killed while jet skiing at Falcon Lake. His wife was able to escape and told law enforcement officials they were attacked by gunmen on a boat. The Zetas drug cartel was blamed for the shooting.
Last week, Mexican officials seized more than 6,000 pounds of pot on the lake. According to a press release from the Border Patrol, agents on the U.S. side saw men on the Mexican bank loading bundles onto a boat. They contacted authorities in Mexico, who seized the drugs.
A sign at a boat ramp on the U.S. side of Falcon Lake reads:
“Warning: Crossing into Mexico could be dangerous. Report criminal or suspicious activity by calling the Zapata County Sheriff’s Office.”
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