Cuero man shot in face; 2 men in custody (Video)

April 26, 2013 at 1:02 p.m.
Updated April 26, 2013 at 11:27 p.m.

Cuero police work in the area where a 19-year-old man was shot Friday morning in the 600 block of Aransas Pass Street in Cuero.

Cuero police work in the area where a 19-year-old man was shot Friday morning in the 600 block of Aransas Pass Street in Cuero.

CUERO - A 19-year-old Cuero man was in critical condition after he was shot twice in the face about 10:30 a.m. Friday, said Cuero Chief of Police Jay Lewis.

Brandon Perez was shot in the 600 block of Aransas Pass Street in Cuero and taken to Citizens Medical Center, where he was then flown to Brooke Army Medical Center in San Antonio, said Arthur Leske, Perez's uncle.

"He is a very good kid. He did good in school and graduated. He had been working. ... He was walking to go find another job when this happened. He was just walking down the street," Leske said, still trying to comprehend the violence.

A witness to the crime, who did not want to be identified, said she saw Perez get shot from a blue car that quickly drove away.

"I grabbed my phone and dialed 911 as I ran out there. ... I stayed there because he was just groaning and rolling around in pain. He wasn't talking, but I asked him to be still and told him I called EMS," she said. "I felt awful to see a kid like that. Even if he survives, he won't ever be the same."

Lewis would not confirm Perez was the victim but said his department arrested two men who are being charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.

"We located a vehicle matching the suspects' description, made a traffic stop on the vehicle, identified the driver and confirmed he was one of the suspects involved," Lewis said.

The first suspect, who confessed, took the second suspect to Cuero Community Hospital with a stab wound after the shooting, Lewis said. The stabbed man was treated and released from the hospital. Both men are being held at the DeWitt County Jail.

Their names were not available Friday, and Lewis would not say how the stabbing occurred.

Tearsten Casanova, 18, said she dated Perez in high school. She said the two went to Olive Garden in Victoria for their first date.

"He (Perez) was really sweet. He was super nice. He has a dorky side; I know that," Casanova said. "He was just lovable."

Leske said his nephew graduated from Cuero High School in 2012 and was an avid athlete, running track and playing on the football team. He said Perez wants to attend school to learn auto repair because he loves working with cars.

He hopes that is still a possibility for Perez.

"One bullet went in the right side below his eye and came out the back, and the other went in the left cheek and hit his brain, and he had bleeding on his brain. . He is going to have to have a lot of reconstructive surgery," his uncle said as he drove to San Antonio to be with Perez.

Leske said he believes the shooting is gang related.

A knife, a 9 mm handgun and a 45 mm handgun were recovered, Lewis said.

The incident remains under investigation by Cuero police.



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