Man accused of shooting tow truck driver allegedly committed string of crimes while out on bond

Friday, March 11, 2022
Shooting suspect went on crime spree before arrest, records show
As police were investigating the shooting that injured a truck driver, they said the suspect was able to leave a trail of more victims.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- It was midnight on Feb. 8 when a tow truck driver named Jimmy said he was just trying to clean his car but was held up at gunpoint.

"He was covered in a face mask, pulled out the gun and told me don't move," Jimmy recalled. "I still got that one bullet in my stomach."

Authorities believe this was a robbery and said the suspected shooter is 31-year-old Zachary Smith. Jimmy said he watched Smith jump in the passenger seat of a vehicle and take off, but another tow truck driver who saw the commotion followed the suspect's car.

Houston police eventually caught up and tried to pull the suspects over, but a chase began.

They said Smith got out of the car and ran, but a K-9 officer took him down, and an ambulance was called to treat his wounds.

Smith was arrested that night and charged with evading arrest and aggravated assault on a public servant for ramming a police officer's car. His bonds totaled $70,000. He made bail and was released before ever being charged with shooting Jimmy.

ORIGINAL REPORT: Houston police arrest suspect in attempted car wash robbery and shooting after chase

The suspect led police on a chase after allegedly shooting a wrecker driver. He crashed on I-610 and took off on foot before a K-9 stopped him.

"He got to the point where he assaulted a police officer. That there tells you that he (doesn't) care about life," said Jimmy.

Records show that two weeks later, Smith was charged with a string of other crimes for stealing a car, getting into a chase with a Harris County Sheriff's deputy and three other aggravated robberies.

Police said during that time their investigation into the shooting was ongoing.'

Smith was finally arrested again on Feb. 22 for those other felony charges. According to people with knowledge of the investigation, Smith admitted then to his involvement with the shooting and provided the location of the gun.

That new evidence helped police finally charge him a month later with Jimmy's shooting.

"I didn't have but $4 in my pocket. That was it," said Jimmy.

Smith's bond for the aggravated assault on a public servant was revoked and is now a no-bond. But at least four other people reportedly fell victim to Smith after Jimmy's shooting.

"I mean, that's not right. They should have just kept him in there," said Jimmy.

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