A 14-year-old boy is facing murder charges in Houston after he allegedly threw eggs at a motorist who flashed a gun, leading to a high-speed chase that ended in the death of a motorist.
Police say the 14-year-old was behind the wheel of a GMC Acadia SUV with two other juveniles inside. As NBC News reported, the group were throwing eggs at passing motorists when one of them pulled a semi-automatic handgun and chased the boys. The 14-year-old allegedly sped through a busy commercial street, running a red light and striking a Ford pickup truck, killing the woman who was driving.
The victim was identified as 45-year-old Silvia Zavala, who was declared dead at the scene of the crash. Police said it appeared she had just gone shopping, and pictures of the crash showed both crumpled cars in a ditch directly in front of a shopping center.
The 14-year-old who reportedly sparked the crash was charged with murder and taken to a juvenile detention center, police said. They have also identified the man who flashed the gun and chased the teens, saying they plan to interview him as well.
Zavala was a single mother, and her devastated family spoke out after the crash.
“She raised us alone,” said the woman’s daughter, 20-year-old Jessica Gaspar, in an interview with KPRC. “She was a single mother, and she always taught me to stay strong and stay positive.”
Family members also said the family has sympathy for the 14-year-old boy, but believed he needs to face punishment.
“We don’t wish harm on anyone. No one. But the parents… let’s take care of our kids. Where were those parents of those teens?” Zavala’s sister, Fabiola, told KHOU. “If you know your son is a bad kid, you need to be on top of them. What are they up to? Who are they hanging out with? What are they doing?”
As the story garnered national attention, many also expressed sympathy for the teen, saying that while he made a mistake in joyriding with his friends, the fault for the crash lies more with the man who brandished a weapon and left the teens in fear for their lives.
Okay, so egg throwing is not cool…but a 14 year old throws eggs…a dude responds with a semi-automatic weapon and chases the kids, causing a fatal accident. The kid that threw the eggs gets booked for murder and the guy with the gun…nothing? https://t.co/DOqwrsXEg7
— J Daniel Ford (@jdanielford) January 2, 2019
Police said they are now investigating how the teen was able to get access to the SUV. They have not yet said if the parents of the boy or any other adult could face charges. The man who allegedly brandished a semi-automatic gun is not yet facing any charges either.