Shooting victim driven to Austin hospital dies; suspect caught

Hector Guajardo Garcia
Hector Guajardo-Garcia (Austin Police Department Photo)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A 23-year-old driven to the hospital with gunshot wounds two weeks ago died Wednesday at an Austin hospital after being put in a medically induced coma.

Police officers were called to the shopping center at 9616 N. Lamar Blvd. — just north of Rundberg Lane — at 11:40 p.m. on Nov. 23 for a report of a shooting.

Arriving officers were told that two shooting victims were taken to North Austin Medical Center by private vehicles. Samuel Charlez was later taken to St. David’s Round Rock Medical Center by STAR Flight helicopter where he immediately underwent surgery and was listed in critical condition, police said. Court documents show Charlez had multiple gunshot wounds to his stomach.

The other shooting victim had non-life threatening injuries.

Witnesses to the shooting told investigators they were in the shopping center parking lot when an SUV pulled up. Charlez and the other shooting victim walked toward the SUV when they heard 3-4 gunshots. The witnesses say Charlez walked in their direction holding his stomach and saying he’d been shot.

They say the shooter, instead of speeding away, slowly drove past them with the windows down, as if to make sure they saw who shot Charlez.

Investigators working the case were able to identify the shooter as Hector Guajardo-Garcia, 32. A family friend said Charlez had gotten in an altercation with Guajardo-Garcia around two days before the shooting and they had known each other for five years. Investigators spoke to Charlez’s girlfriend, who said Charlez robbed the suspect during a narcotics transaction a few days earlier.

On Nov. 30, Guajardo-Garcia was arrested by the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force on two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

At 7:10 p.m. Wednesday, Charlez died from his injuries. The medical examiner determined the cause of death as gunshot trauma to the body and the death was ruled a homicide. Due to the death of the victim, the charges against the suspect are likely to change.

Bond has been set at $100,000.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call the Homicide Tip Lin at 512-477-3588 or Crime Stoppers at 512-472-TIPS, or text “Tip 103” and your message to CRIMES.

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