Witness describes chaos inside Whataburger (w/video)

Kathryn Cargo By Kathryn Cargo

Feb. 11, 2018 at 9:27 p.m.
Updated Feb. 12, 2018 at 4:42 p.m.

A shooting happened early Sunday monring inside Whataburger, 3603 Houston Highway.

A shooting happened early Sunday monring inside Whataburger, 3603 Houston Highway.   Kathryn Cargo for The Victoria Advocate

One of two men shot inside Whataburger early Sunday morning is in good condition after surgery, his close friend said.

At 2:30 a.m., Victoria Police Department officers responded to Whataburger, 3603 Houston Highway, said David Brogger, department spokesman. Gunfire erupted during an altercation between Rudolfo Estrada, 35, and Lorenzo Banda, 34, and both men had at least two gunshot wounds. Brogger did not know the city of residence for either man.

Both men were taken to Victoria hospitals, Brogger said. As of Sunday night, no arrests had been made.

Ariana Munoz, 27, of Victoria, said she was a close family friend of Estrada. He underwent a five-hour surgery Sunday and was in the intensive care unit in a medically induced coma. He is going to be OK, she said. One of the gunshots went through his left intestine and shattered his tailbone.

She said Estrada minds his own business and went out only for a birthday party Saturday night. He was getting something to eat when the incident happened, Munoz said.

"He's the type that never asks for trouble," she said. "He's a hard-working man. He takes care of his family."

Orlando Cantu, 24, of Victoria, was at the Whataburger when the incident happened and shot a short video of the aftermath he posted on Facebook.

Cantu said Banda shot Estrada twice, and Estrada took the gun from him in self-defense and then shot Banda twice. Banda took off running from the restaurant, he said.

"Rudy was on the floor bleeding out, and I went and helped him out," he said. "I got some napkins, put them on his wound and put pressure on it."

After the first shot, everyone in the Whataburger froze, he said. Cantu started to yell for everyone to get down after the first shot. A security officer was present when the crime happened, he said.

"The security officer didn't do anything at all," he said. "He stood there and froze up."

The Whataburger was closed for several hours Sunday but reopened later in the day. Employees there referred questions to their corporate office. A statement from that office has been requested.

*This story was updated Feb. 12 to correct the spelling of Ariana Munoz's last name.


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