The shooting happened at about 2am Thursday in southeast Houston and witnesses claim to have heard arguing shortly before the gunshots rang out.
It was a gruesome murder scene, as the victim left a trail of blood from the dumpster where he was shot, over to the staircase as he tried to get help, before collapsing with in view of his mother.
It's a sound a distraught mother can't get out of her head -- the sound of five or six gunshots, followed by the nightmarish scene she found minutes later right at the bottom of her apartment staircase. Her son, Miguel Cordova, 33, was lying dead. Cordova's mother and older brother rushed over.
"All the bullets was all over his face," said his brother Guillermo Hernandez. "They look like they shot him pretty good in his face."
Houston police homicide detectives say before the shooting Cordova was standing outside his family's southeast Houston apartment with others. He had been on the phone when a confrontation broke out, and then he was shot.
His sister Irene Cordova believes it may have something to do with a phone conversation he had a few days ago.
"He was arguing with somebody on the phone over some money and apparently from what we know, somebody brought him some money to pay somebody else," she said.
Family members deny the shooting was gang related but admit Cordova may have kept bad company.
"Hanging around with the wrong people, you know," Hernandez said.
Still, they are hoping the person who murdered their brother and son is caught.
Irene said, "Nobody has a right to take anybody else's life, so they must pay for what they did."
Police are not discussing a motive, but they are trying to track down the person Cordova was on the phone with before he was shot. Family members say they believe they know who is responsible, and they have shared that information with police. Police have not named any suspects.
Anyone with information in this case is urged to contact the HPD Homicide Division at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.