AUSTIN, Texas - Austin police are asking for help identifying a man they said shot at a passenger on a Capital Metro bus.
“A little verbal argument turned into an aggravated assault,” said Det. Rick Stevens with the Austin Police Department Criminal Investigations Unit.
Police said on October 24, just before noon, a man on the bus got into an argument with a juvenile.
“One of the passengers on the bus thought that somebody had stolen his headphones, and when he made a confrontation to another person about those headphones, the person said, ‘No, those are mine.’ Other witnesses on the bus said that person brought those headphones on,” Stevens said.
The man then began arguing with another passenger according to Stevens. When the bus stopped on Springdale Road near Givens Park, the argument escalated.
“One passenger just took his property, threw it off the bus, at which time the suspect jumped off the bus, grabbed his item, of which he pulled out a gun and then fired into the bus,” said Stevens.
Because the bus was pulling away when the suspect fired, Stevens said anyone could've been hit.
Luckily, no one was.
“The bus is full of passengers. You're shooting into a bus, you got potential ricochets of victims being in there, not the intended person being shot at,” Stevens said.
Police have released images of the suspect, who they describe as about 25 years old, 5'8" and around 150 pounds.
“He may be someone that hangs around the bus stops, but he's just not a frequent rider. People on the bus didn't ever recognize him, that are frequent riders,” said Stevens.
Stevens warns people to think twice before engaging in an argument with a stranger.
“Be aware of who they’re dealing with, I mean, you don't know who this person is, or, again, this guy just pulled a gun out of nowhere,” Stevens said.
Capital Metro said they could not comment on an open investigation.
Police said the suspect will likely be charged with aggravated assault if or when he is located.
They ask anyone with information about him or the crime to call their office or Crimestoppers at (512) 472-TIPS.