BEEVILLE — “No one should want reporters to start adding names at random to arrest reports,” a Bee-Picayune editorial staffer said this past Monday morning.
That was in reference to criticism he heard over the weekend from readers who said the newspaper got the entire story wrong about a homicide on South Adams Street.
Police Chief Robert J. Bridge had a quick response for those who believe anonymous reports on social media. “Quit believing (it).”
Bridge read the article Monday morning and responded, “It’s all correct as to the time the story was printed.”
The front-page article in the Friday, Aug. 3, edition of the newspaper reported that two men, 36-year-old Greg Bohac and 19-year-old Cameron Lerma, had been arrested on charges just minutes after the victim, 19-year-old Austin Salinas, was shot in the chest in the 1500 block of South Adams Street.
The shooting had taken place at about 3 a.m. that Wednesday at a residence there.
The men suspected of being involved in the shooting were arrested a short distance from the scene by Sgt. Cecil Daniels.
Bridge said Daniels was patrolling nearby and heard what he recognized as gunshots.
He quickly spotted a vehicle leaving the area where he had heard the gunshots and stopped it.
Inside, Daniels found a handgun. Two other handguns were found a short distance away from where the pickup truck with the suspects were stopped.
Investigators said the two guns had been thrown from the pickup truck before the driver stopped for Daniels.
The sergeant detained five men after finding a handgun in the vehicle, but no one else was arrested or charged.
After hearing complaints that the published story was wrong, Bridge said that the article in the Friday newspaper did not match the rumor mill information that had been circulated on two internet sites, Facebook and Beeville Topix.
When asked Thursday morning if the names of the suspects and victim were correct, Bridge told the reporter working on the story, “You certainly want to believe what was on Topix.”
Then he laughed.
The chief confirmed this week that Bohac had been charged with murder after the victim died of his wound at Christus Spohn Hospital Beeville.
Bohac also was charged with two counts of tampering with physical evidence and possession of marijuana, less than two ounces.
Bridge confirmed that Lerma had been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and one count of tampering with physical evidence.
Authorities at the Bee County Jail said Bohac was still in custody Monday morning with bonds totaling $1,250,000.
Lerma was released on Wednesday, Aug. 2, after posting bonds totaling $95,000.
Additionally, Bridge also said another arrest had been made in connection with a separate shooting incident that took place in the 1000 block of North Avenue D just before 10 p.m. on July 27.
Kelvin Davis, 53, was arrested on July 30 and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, three counts of attempted murder and one count of deadly conduct.
He was still in jail this week and his bonds totaled $780,000.
Bridge said Davis is the stepfather of 38-year-old Raymond Lockett, who was the first suspect arrested in connection with the July 27 shooting.
He was taken into custody the morning of the shooting in the 500 block of West Sylvia Street.
Lockett was charged with three counts of attempted murder and one count of deadly conduct when he was arrested the night of the shooting.
Lockett was still in custody this week.
Gary Kent is a reporter at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 120, or at reporter@mySouTex.com.