Innocent teen caught in gang crossfire

HOUSTON Family members say 14-year-old Dedrick Nash went to Tidwell Park in northeast Houston to get his twin brother when rival gangs began shooting. Despite the bullet lodged in his back, Dedrick's mother, Joyce, says her son will recover.

"I know my son is going to walk again because my son is strong," she said. "We're gonna be here for him. He's gonna walk again."

Nash was paralyzed when he was shot in the crossfire between rival gangs on Tuesday. He'd gone to the park to tell his twin brother, Derrick, to come home.

"So you were playing basketball?" we asked Derrick.

"Yeah," he said. "And they started having a little fight, a little argument. They started shooting. We took off. The bullet hit him in the back and that's just how it happened."

Police tell us the fight was a spillover from an earlier argument between the two gangs.

"We discovered there've been a number of fights and incidents between the two groups over the last several weeks," said Sgt. Thomas Biggs with the Houston Police Department.

Gang violence is enough of a problem in Houston and Harris County that both HPD and the sheriff's office have units dedicated to investigating criminal gangs responsible for a wide variety of crimes.

"Robberies, burglaries, auto theft, narcotics transactions," listed Sgt. Mark Schmidt with the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

But they say they cannot tackle the consistent problem alone. And they need the help of parents.

"Please pay attention to your children and your children's friends and what they are doing, where they are going," said Sgt. Schmidt.

Otherwise, even innocent children like Dedrick Nash face a lifetime of struggle.

"I just want them to catch the guys who did it to my son," said Joyce.

Police have interviewed witnesses to the shooting and hope to make an arrest by the end of the week.

Authorities are looking for two gunmen. Anyone with any information is being asked to call Crime Stoppers at 713-222-TIPS.

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