AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin police continue to seek help from the public to identify suspects in a weekend shooting in north Austin that left one man dead and two others with gunshot wounds, police said in a press conference Tuesday.
The shooting took place just before bar break at 2 a.m. Sunday in the parking lot of the La Preferida bar at 10205 N. Lamar Boulevard near Masterson Pass.
When police arrived at the scene, they found 26-year-old Julio Cesar Gamez-Contreras with a gunshot wound that turned deadly. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Two other men had gunshot wounds in their legs and were taken to the hospital for treatment.
On Tuesday, APD announced one of the men had been released from the hospital on Monday and the other would be released later in the day.
Police believe a verbal argument between two groups of people at the bar escalated to a shooting. The three victims were seated at a table with three other friends, police say. The suspects were at a table with eight people.
The argument may have started over a girl or alcohol, police say, and it quickly escalated into a physical fight. When the groups began throwing chairs and tables, everyone was kicked out of the bar, APD Sgt. Tracy Gerrish said.
The fight continued in the parking lot and a security guard came out and shot pepper spray at the brawling groups until they dispersed, Gerrish said. Everyone involved got in their cars and the three victims all got in one car together.
Then, Gerrish said, a white Chevy Avalanche/ Escalade pulled up and blocked their car in. Police believe a passenger in the Chevy was the only person to pull out a gun and start shooting at the victims. He is described as a Hispanic man, about 5’10” tall with stocky build, a goatee and possibly a mustache.
Police also believe there’s another vehicle that was involved in this altercation, and it is described as a Chevy Silverado truck that left right after the white vehicle.
Police don’t think the two groups of people knew each other before the shooting.
Anyone with video or information about the shooting is urged to contact police or Crime Stoppers at (512) 472-TIPS or text “Tip 103” and your message to CRIMES.