AUSTIN (KXAN) — A security guard at a North Austin motel has been charged with murder in the death of a 27-year-old man on Friday.
Robert Earl Goins II, 43, told police he got into an altercation with Jonathan Cook at the Budget Lodge before he fired his gun at least two times. Austin police officers were next door at a Chevron gas station at Interstate 35 and Rundberg Lane when they heard the gunshots.
Goins told police “It was me,” when asked by police about the gunshots.
Officers then saw Cook leaving the motel in a car around 10 p.m. He crashed a short time later on Interstate 35. “The officer approached and found that the driver was deceased in the vehicle,” said Cpl. David Boyd with APD.
The interstate was shut down for about seven hours as homicide investigators gathered evidence from the two crime scenes.
In a news conference on Monday afternoon, a detective said they are still trying to determine if Goins was allowed to have a weapon.
While Cook was not a guest at the hotel, he was “allegedly doing something else on the property when Goins confronted him,” said Sgt. Jerry Bauzon.
The warrant for Goins’ arrest indicates he opened fire after Cook allegedly began messing with Goins’ personal vehicle. Goins told officers he opened fire as Cook tried to leave.
Goins was arrested Monday by Lone Star Fugitive Task Force members and bond was set at $300,000.
The investigation into Cook’s death is ongoing, and anyone with information is asked to call the Homicide Tip Line at 512-477-3588 or Crime Stoppers at 512-472-TIPS or text “Tip 103” + your message to CRIMES.