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3 Fort Worth teens arrested in fatal shooting of Paschal High School junior at Whataburger

Fort Worth Star-Telegram logoFort Worth Star-Telegram 1/23/2023 Emerson Clarridge, Domingo Ramirez Jr., Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Three teens have been arrested in connection with the Friday, January 20, 2023 fatal shooting of a Paschal High School junior at a Whataburger restaurant across from the Fort Worth school. © James Hartley/Star-Telegram/TNS Three teens have been arrested in connection with the Friday, January 20, 2023 fatal shooting of a Paschal High School junior at a Whataburger restaurant across from the Fort Worth school.

The surviving Paschal High School student who was shot on Friday in a parking lot before and after her cousin was slain on the sidewalk outside a Fort Worth fast food restaurant appears to have told police that the shooting was motivated by her public criticism of former friends she believes were involved in the overdose death of her sister.

An arrest warrant affidavit describes the underpinning of the police investigation and the evidence that homicide detectives concluded exists to support the arrests in the case of three teenagers on suspicion of murder. The document redacts the name of the female victim who survived. Other information in the document makes her role as an eyewitness and victim clear.

The victim appears to have told a detective that last year she had been friends with a group of teenagers who at one time attended Paschal High School. She appears to have told a detective that she had a falling out with the group and early last week referred online to them using an expletive, according to the affidavit that redacts the name of the subject of the interview.

In the minutes before the killing about 4 p.m. Friday, five youths arrived in two sport utility vehicles at the Whataburger at 2401 W. Berry St., across from the school.

Police arrested on suspicion of murder and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon Daniel Reed and Isaiah Nunez, both 17, and a 16-year-old male whose name police did not release because of his age.

The female victim’s cousin, Zechariah Trevino, a 17-year-old Paschal junior, died at a hospital. The surviving victim appears to have told police that a person she knows as Danny B arrived at the restaurant in an SUV and did not wait for the driver to park before he attempted to get out and began to yell at her.

The encounter and shooting were recorded by Whataburger surveillance cameras, according to the affidavit.

Police suggest in the document that before he shot the female victim, Reed emerged from one of vehicles wearing a balaclava that covered much of his face and held a pistol in his right hand. With another suspect who joined him, they argued with the victims.

Police allege in the affidavit that the second shooter was Nunez and that the 16-year-old boy was a driver.

Though she is not explicitly identified in the the affidavit, the police account of the surveillance recording suggests that the female victim walked to Reed as he was inside a vehicle’s doorway. The suspect flinched at her, and she shoved the door at him.

The female victim turned to walk away. Reed fired the pistol once and shot her in the torso, the affidavit suggests. Nunez walked from behind a vehicle and pulled his own handgun from his waistband, the affidavit suggests. It appeared that he racked it.

This suspect shot at the female victim once and fired eight to 10 rounds at Trevino, who was standing behind the female victim on the sidewalk, along the Whataburger’s glass façade, the video showed.

He fired once more at the female victim while she was on the ground.

The license plate on one of the vehicles was recorded on the surveillance video.

Police said that the suspects are not current Paschal students. According to Fort Worth Independent School District, Reed withdrew from the district in 2021. The affidavit states that Nunez is also a former Paschal student.

A necklace holding a cross, “was the only thing that was on his person when I went today to pick up his belongings,” Zechariah Trevino’s mother, Erica Trevino, wrote on Monday in a Facebook post.

“I’m so broken without you,” she wrote.

Erica Trevino told WFAA-TV that Zechariah worked as a cook at the Whataburger and died while trying to protect his cousin. The two were waiting at the restaurant for a relative to pick them up after school.

“He did exactly what we taught him to do, that was to protect,” Erica Trevino said. “His life wasn’t just taken on selfish acts. He changed all that by standing up for what he believed in, protecting.”

Zechariah was to become a father in a few months. His girlfriend is pregnant, his mother said. She thanked God for “blessing us with My Baby Boy,” writing in the Facebook post, “Thank you for his life. Give us peace comfort and compassion as we leave this all in [your] hands.”

In another post, she thanked “everyone who continues to keep our family in prayer,” saying “we appreciate it more than you know.”

She described her son as loving and caring. “We had so many dreams and expectations for Zechariah,” she told WFAA.

The family is raising money for funeral expenses. Donations can be made via Cashapp to @EricaRico86.

Fort Worth Police Chief Neil Noakes said on Friday that shootings among teenagers and young adults have increased in the city as the result of a lack of conflict-resolution skills.

“It seems these days with some very young people ... conflict resolution involves a gun,” Noakes said. “You have so much more to live for and so does anybody you may have conflict with.”

Paschal had additional security on its campus Monday and support staff available for students and district employees who wanted counseling, the district said. Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Angélica Ramsey also planned to visit the school.

“As educators we are troubled by this and other violent tragedies in our society,” Ramsey wrote in a message Monday to district staff and parents. “I want to reassure our staff that the safety of our children and staff is our highest priority. Coming together as a community is the only way to find solutions, ensure that students and staff are safe and allow us to continue the important work of education.”

An interdenominational prayer service and candlelight vigil was held Monday at University United Methodist Church, at 2416 W. Berry St.

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