Boy, 9, killed in home invasion

October 29, 2008 4:04:06 PM PDT
A nine-year-old boy was shot while sleeping inside his own home early Wednesday morning. It all started when a group of gunmen stormed into one home and then went next door to little Cesar Armendarez's home on East Hardy near Hill in north Harris County.

When four men left the small blue house riddled with bullet holes, they tore a hole in the hearts of a Houston family.

"He never caused no problems," said Pedro Armendarez, Jr., the victim's brother. "Just a regular boy."

That regular boy was sleeping in his bed early Wednesday morning when one of the bullets fired by four men went through the wall and into his head.

"There was like several shots, then it was kind of quiet for a few minutes, then we heard several shots again," said neighbor Susie Bruce.

Neighbors heard the loud gunfire that killed Cesar and left his dad shot in the foot.

"They pretty well concentrated their fire on the northwest bedroom and the little boy was sleeping in the bed in the bedroom in the northwest corner of the house in the northwest corner of the bed," said Sergeant Ben Beall with the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

Sergeant Beall says the suspects had good reason to know the boy and other small children were inside the home. Just minutes before, the men had barged inside that and an adjacent house and tied up several people.

"They were asking for money and, 'Where are the guys' and no one in the house had any idea what they were talking about," said Beall.

Detectives and neighbors describe the family as regular, hard-working folks and suspect the men were looking for something else.

"There's a possibility they may have hit the wrong houses," said Beall. "Both of the houses, they're hard-working, law-abiding people."

Intentional or not, little Cesar is gone and his family prays someone helps them find the killers.

"Somebody had to know who did it or something, that would help us out," said Armendarez. "We'd greatly appreciate it."

Once the suspects are caught, they will be charged with capital murder. Under Texas law, a murder committed during the commission of kidnapping, burglary, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, arson or obstruction or retaliation is a capital offense and punishable by death.

If you have any information regarding this case, you're asked to call the Homicide Division at 713.967.5810 or Crime Stoppers at 713.222.TIPS.

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