Man charged in shooting deaths of his girlfriend and her mother at west Houston apartment

Tuesday, June 22, 2021
Mother and daughter killed at W. Houston apartment
As officers arrived to answer an assault call, they saw a woman knock on an apartment door before she was shot point-blank by a man inside. Here's what else happened.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A man has been charged in the fatal shootings of his girlfriend and her mother at a west Houston apartment complex.

The shooting happened at about 9:15 a.m. on Father's Day in the 1000 block of East Tri Oaks Lane near the Katy Freeway feeder road.

Lewis Trinidad Nunez, 46, is charged with attempted capital murder of a police officer and murder.

Officers were responding to a call about an assault in progress when they saw a woman arrive and knock on the apartment door, according to Houston assistant police chief Yasar Bashir.

Nunez opened the door and shot the woman at close range, in front of a responding officer, police said.

The officer who witnessed the shooting got out of his vehicle and ordered Nunez to drop his weapon.

According to HPD, Nunez fired shots at the officer and the officer returned fire, striking Nunez multiple times before he retreated inside the apartment where he remained for some time before voluntarily giving up.

Nunez was taken into custody and transported to Ben Taub Hospital.

The woman died at the scene.

SWAT officers found the body of another shooting victim during a sweep of the apartment, according to Bashir.

The victim inside the home, described as a woman in her 30s, was the accused shooter's live-in girlfriend, Bashir said. The woman who was shot outside, believed to be in her 60s, was the woman's mother, Bashir said.

It wasn't immediately clear when the woman found inside the apartment was shot.

No officers were hurt during the incident, but their police cruiser was damaged by the gunfire.

Police say Officer H. Tran fired his weapon, but also was not injured.

Tran was sworn in as an HPD officer in June 2012. He is assigned to the Northwest Patrol Division.

Initial reports that the incident was a home invasion call were inaccurate, police said.

Nunez remains hospitalized.

According to court records, this was not Nunez's first offense.

He has an extensive criminal history in Kansas, including assaults on police officers, documents show.

Nunez is also considered a flight risk.

Per protocol with HPD officer-involved shooting incidents in the Houston city limits, the case is being investigated by the HPD Special Investigations Unit, the Internal Affairs Division and the Harris County District Attorney's Office.

Isabel Martinez with the Houston Area Women's Center said since the pandemic hit in March of 2020, the organization has seen a continuous increase in domestic violence cases and victims who say they feel "stuck." Those victims say they find it difficult to reach out for help when their alleged abuser lives with them.

"I would like to tell people who are in these situations that they are not alone," Martinez said. "There are resources available. There are people out there who will believe them. If they are wanting to see how they can get to a safe place, we can definitely help brainstorm with them. What does that look like? What are some plans we can do? We talk about that on our hotline, the different types of safety, financial safety, emotional safety, physical safety more than anything."

Maisha Colter, the CEO of AVDA (Aid to Victims of Domestic Abuse) said that while they have seen the increased number of cases plateau in recent months, the organization saw an increased need for therapy services in children who have survived domestic violence.

"The most important thing is we want people to survive, and so what we want is for them to reach out," Colter said. "Domestic violence thrives in secrecy, in fear and shame. Please don't be ashamed. Obviously, be cautious and fear is OK, but just know that accessing resources is probably the best thing they can do to keep them safe and keep their loved ones safe as well."

For more information on how you can receive help from the Women's Center call 713-528-2121 if you are experiencing domestic violence or call 713-528-7273 if you are experiencing sexual assault.

The video above is from previous reporting on the killings of the mother and her daughter.

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