Texas shooting: Family members inside home share moments leading up to shooting
HOUSTON - **EDITOR'S NOTE: The edits to the shooting suspect's name have been altered to reflect the FBI's note dated April 30**
A Friday night spent with friends and family turned into something Jefrinson Rivera and Wilson Garcia never imagined would happen as they watched their family members die at the hands of a gunman who lived just next door.
"This tragedy that unfolded he had no right, we never offended him. We never disrespected him," Rivera shares.
Francisco Oropesa was allegedly drunk and shooting an AR-15 outside of his home near Cleveland, Texas.
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Garcia says he asked him to stop because a child inside was scared, but the unthinkable happened next.
"I told my wife to go inside because he had loaded the gun," Garcia said.
Oropesa forced himself inside their home, first turning his weapon on Garcia's wife, Sonia Argentina Guzman, who was only 25-years-old.
"That’s when my friend told me to run, Sonia is dead. You have two kids, run. We will take care of ourselves, so that’s when I went through the window," Garcia explains.
Garcia returned a short time later, only to see Oropesa still inside.
"That’s when the suspect shot at me. He shot at me five times behind my house. When he didn’t catch me, he return to gun them down again and shot them on the head again," he says.
Then, the gun was turned on Rivera.
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"I look to my left, and he was pointing his gun at me. He told me I was looking for you, I’m going to kill you," Rivera recalls.
After throwing a machete at Oropsea, both men were able to run to safety.
Now, Rivera and Garcia are left to mourn the loss of their wives. Garcia also lost his 8-year-old child, Daniel Enrique Laso, in the shooting.
"The five people died. Diana and Julisa died covering their children. They died defending their children," Rivera said.
There were a total of 10 people in the home, but FBI spokesperson Christina Garza said investigators do not believe everyone at the home were members of a single family. The other victims who were killed were identified as Diana Velazquez Alvarado, 21; Julisa Molina Rivera, 31; and Jose Jonathan Casarez, 18.
Oropesa is still on the run, which is terrifying for those who survived this tragedy.
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"One, I’m scared because he can come back and look for us, but we’re hoping that police do their job and arrest him," shared Rivera.
The FBI says hundreds of law enforcement officers from over a dozen agencies are actively searching for Oropesa, and he's considered armed and dangerous.
"We're asking everyone for your help so we can bring this suspect or this monster I will call him, to justice," says FBI SAC James Smith.
According to authorities, Texas Governor Greg Abbott has offered a $50,000 reward for Oropesa's arrest, including $5,000 from local Crime Stoppers and the FBI also offering an additional $25,000 dollars for a total reward of $80,000.