Woman in road rage killing may not be indicted

March 10, 2011 3:50:14 AM PST
Police say it started as road rage and ended with a shooting that killed a mother of five. And now we're learning there's a good chance the shooter will never be charged with a crime.

Police have questioned the woman who pulled the trigger during the confrontation at Bissonnet and Synott, and what she told them may be the reason she won't be indicted.

We've gotten a lot questions about this story. How could a woman who shot someone and then took off not have already faced a judge? Well, it appears the law is on her side.

Business was back to normal at the Korner Food Mart in southwest Harris County, a day after its parking lot was blocked off by crime scene tape for hours. The initial shock of what happened there is wearing off, but the questions aren't.

On one side is a woman who says she killed in self defense; on the other, only grieving relatives and friends.

"I mean, just walk away. All you have to do is walk away," said Lorena Mouton, the victim's neighbor.

Reshanette Houston has not been criminally charged in the shooting. She told investigators the woman driving an SUV, Carol Grant -- a mother of five -- cut her off on the road. The two pulled into the parking lot.

Houston says Grant pulled out a knife and that's when she retrieved her gun from her car and shot her. The district attorney's office will refer the case to a grand jury for possible charges. But don't expect any.

"If someone comes after you with a knife, under Texas law, and you're in fear for your life, you can take their life," KTRK Legal Analyst Joel Androphy said.

Androphy says both women had a lot of choices on Tuesday that could have prevented what happened, but this case comes down to the seconds before the shooting and only one person is alive to talk about it.

"The bottom line is did she pull the trigger because she thought the woman was going to attack her with a knife? That's what you look at," Androphy said. "All the other issues are pieces of the puzzle, but the two largest pieces are gun, the knife and the actors involved."

While we found Grant to have no criminal background, Houston does have a Harris County court record from 2009 -- unlawfully carrying a weapon during a traffic stop. The report says the serial number of the pistol was filed off, and the charge was ultimately dismissed.

We went to two apartments looking for Houston, but she wasn't there. We were able to get a hold her by phone, but it was a short conversation. She hung up.

It won't be so easy in the future. Harris County grand jurors will have more questions they'll want answered.

We had a phone conversation on Wednesday night with a neighbor of Houston and he said a week ago, she confronted him and that during the confrontation, her boyfriend pulled a gun on him. He did file a police report.

Investigators have sent the gun and the knife in the road rage shooting to a lab for DNA and fingerprint testing. They say they also have eyewitnesses as evidence in this controversial case.

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