Gunman on the loose after shooting in Texas City

April 6, 2012 4:40:34 PM PDT
Police in Texas City are searching for a suspect accused of shooting a man in the gut last night, and now we're learning more the victim and the suspected gunman.

The shooting happened on Fifth Avenue just outside the front door of a grocery store. Witnesses say 50-year-old Marion Hines was an innocent bystander. Now, the search is on for man who police say killed him.

"Marion Hines was a very nice guy. If he could help you, he'd help you," said his friend, Rosemary Miller.

Hines treated his friends like family.

"Mamma Rose, that's all he'd call me, Mamma Rose," Miller said.

Miller has known Hines for more than 20 years and says he was more like a son than a friend, which makes the fact that he's gone that much harder for her to believe.

"It's very sad," she said.

Well-wishers left flowers and stuffed animals outside the Texas City grocery store where Hines was gunned down. It happened around 10:30pm Thursday. Nineteen-year-old Ralph Bell was with him.

"It wasn't meant for him. He was at the wrong place at the wrong time," Bell said.

Texas City police are now looking for 23-year-old Char'Mon Leon Smith. Witnesses say Smith and another man got into a fight; one of them took out a gun. It dropped and went off. The bullet hit Hines.

"He was holding his side, you know, and it looked like he was in a lot of pain," said Terris Miller, Hines' friend.

He was rushed to the hospital where he later died. Smith, who fled the scene, is now charged with murder.

Hines wasn't just a customer, he worked at he grocery store. He was off last night but stopped here to pick up a few things before heading back to Miller's house. All she wants now is justice.

"I wish he would turn himself in and go and face the charges because I know it's not right," Miller said.

Texas City police say Smith is believed to be armed and dangerous and anyone who sees him should use extreme caution and call police immediately.


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