Victim in wild road rage incident identified

HOUSTON It happened Tuesday afternoon on West Bellfort near Kirkwood in southwest Houston.

The emergency call center received a flurry of phone calls as people witnessed gunshots from a moving truck. It all ended at an apartment complex on West Bellfort near Kirkwood with one man dead. The incident left police looking for two armed men and another man homeless.

Though it was a murder scene, Houston police needed the help of the fire department to free victim Tony Perez from a crash that had happened in his apartment. Perez recognizes how easily things could have been different.

"I was showering like three minutes before, and my shower is right there where the truck is," he said. "My shower is not there anymore."

For Perez, it all happened in a second.

"It was a blow, like a bomb. Poof!" he said.

But police say it started earlier on the Southwest Freeway. Police say Theodore Mitsakos, 49, was behind the wheel of a white pickup truck when he called his business partner just before 3pm. It was his last conversation.

"He told his partner he got cut off, he beeped his horn at him, and they fell behind him and started chasing him," said Kevin Carr with HPD Homicide.

They ended up on busy West Bellfort, where kids were getting out of school. Behind Mitsakos were two men in a black pickup.

"They were both hanging outside the windows of the vehicle firing bullets," Carr said. "Both were firing at the truck."

Witnesses heard as many as eight gunshots. Mitsakos was hit in the head and lost control. The white pickup hit an SUV before careening into the apartment wall and throwing Perez to the ground.

Perez said he tried to help Mitsakos but there wasn't anything he could do. Now, his bedroom has turned into a murder scene and is off limits.

Firefighters tore up the walls of the apartment complex before they left the scene Tuesday. The apartment complex will have to deal with it today.

Through a phone interview with Eyewitness News, a niece of Mitsakos said he was a kind-hearted man.

The suspects are described only as two light-skinned black or dark-skinned Hispanic males last seen westbound on West Bellfort in a black Chevrolet or Ford pickup truck. Police plan to look at surveillance video along the chase's route to piece together the incident.

Anyone with information about this case is urged to contact the HPD Homicide Division at 713-308-3600 or Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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