Bar Fight Escalates
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An altercation in Conroe Friday morning led to the third fatal shooting in Montgomery County in less than a month that could test the ...
December 23rd, 2007 07:18 AM
Bar Fight Escalates
An altercation in Conroe Friday morning led to the third fatal shooting in Montgomery County in less than a month that could test the recently enacted "Castle Doctrine."
Police said a disagreement between two men in a local bar transitioned to angry text messages after the bar closed, then escalated to a physical confrontation that resulted in gunfire at an apartment.
Conroe police said 25-year-old Austin Revel Cargill allegedly shot and killed Jordan Robert Eakins, 26, around 2:45 a.m. at Cargill's residence in the Forest Creek Apartments off of North Loop 336.
Conroe Police Sgt. Bob Berry said Cargill was answering questions, but no charges have been filed.
"Once we received his statement, compared it with the evidence at the scene and presented the case to the District Attorney's intake division, it was concluded that there would be no arrest at this time," Berry said. "So far, the information we have is consistent and reasonable to believe in this case the complainant (Cargill) acted within the scope of the law."
A grand jury will hear the case and determine what, if any, charges will be filed. It was the county's third fatal shooting in less than a month that could test the Castle Law, or Senate Bill 378, which went into effect in Texas Sept. 1 and extends people's rights to use deadly force without retreat for self-defense purposes in their home, vehicle or workplace.
Berry would not comment on the Castle Law, stating CPD was not going to label the case as such.
On Nov. 25, Montgomery resident Paul Smith Sr. allegedly shot and killed Clark "Corky" Dennis during a heated confrontation in Smith's yard between the two neighbors regarding reckless driving in their neighborhood, Old Oak Estates.
A few days later, on Nov. 29, a Porter resident also used deadly force. After repeated thefts of large recyclable items from his property, 60-year-old Gary Southworth shot and killed a man on his property.
Those cases are not expected to go before a grand jury until at least late January.
Berry said it has not been determined what caused Friday's fatal confrontation. While the Police Department would not release the text messages exchanged, Berry said Eakins threatened to harm Cargill in the messages.
Eakins allegedly went to Cargill's residence and "began causing a disturbance at the front door of his apartment," which Berry said was confirmed by witnesses as well as the first 9-1-1 call made by Cargill.
"Cargill advised Eakins to leave and to stop beating on his door, then Cargill observed Eakins walk down the stairs in front of the apartment," Berry said. "Cargill unlocked the door and opened the door to see if Eakins was gone, which is when Eakins allegedly charged up the stairs and confronted Cargill in the doorway."
Berry said Cargill went back inside and warned Eakins not to come inside, saying he had a gun.
"Eakins allegedly lunged at Cargill through the open door and began to assault Cargill, causing both subjects to land on the floor," Berry said. "Cargill was still holding the weapon and was able to shoot the victim in the torso."
Cargill fired seven shots into Eakins with his Smith and Wesson .22-caliber semiautomatic pistol, Berry said.
He then called 9-1-1 a second time at 2:45 a.m. and said he shot the intruder, Berry said.
Medics transported Eakins to Conroe Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. Precinct 1 Justice of the Peace Lanny Moriarty ordered an autopsy.
Cargill had superficial injuries supporting his claim he was attacked, Berry said.
Investigators interviewed witnesses at Molly's Pub, located on North Loop 336, where the conflict allegedly started. Manager Daniel Hallock said he was shocked about the shooting. He said Eakins was a regular customer and liked by everyone.
"I've known Jordan for years," Hallock said. "He was a very laid-back, nice guy."
Hallock could not remember Cargill but said he and other employees agreed the name was familiar.
What surprised Hallock most, he said, was hearing police say the problem started at Molly's.
"Nothing happened here. There was no fight, no brawl, no altercation," he said. "As far as I know, he left here just fine and didn't seem intoxicated."
Hallock was so troubled by the news, he questioned his staff, including the bartender.
"I looked at (Eakins') tab, and he didn't drink very much," he said.
Berry said officers did not detect the odor of alcohol on Cargill or believe he was intoxicated.
Wow, talk about testosterone posturing.
"The natural progress of things is for liberty to yield, and government to gain ground."
- Thomas Jefferson
"I'm the arrow, you're my bow, shoot me forth and I will go"
"Do not let any individual posts put a knot in your Big Boy Under-Roos"
December 23rd, 2007 11:31 AM
My real question is why the police weren't there before he had to shoot the guy. Everyone says that if you call 911, you don't need a gun because the police respond immediately. </sarcasm>
December 23rd, 2007 11:44 AM
"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance." -Thomas Jefferson
"Liberalism is a Mental Disorder." -Michael Savage
GOOD Gun Control is being able to hit your target! -Myself
December 23rd, 2007 09:54 PM
Text messages aside, Eakins assaulted Cargill in his home. It sounds like he got what he was asking for!
ALWAYS carry! - NEVER tell!
"A superior Operator is best defined as someone who uses his superior
judgement to keep himself out of situations that would require a display of his
December 23rd, 2007 10:37 PM
Pick a fight with me in my home, you lose! AM licensed embalmer and dead bodies do not frighten me at all..and to see one more, no big deal! Yeah he got what he deserved..
December 23rd, 2007 10:43 PM
Stupid move was opening his door to a known aggressor to "see if Eakins was gone".
If he's no longer banging on your door then he's gone. Wait for the police to knock on your door.
Seeing if he was gone had a 50/50 result. Either he was gone and all is well. Or he was not gone and there would be an attack to defend against first hand, hand to hand. And that is exactly what happened. He played the odds and lost.
Cargill is extremely fortunate that Eakins was not armed with say a pocket knife. If he had been he, Cargill, would have been the person being referred to n the article as DOA.
This should be a lesson for us all.
Stay in your home behind a tough to breech door as opposed to letting down your defenses for no good nor sensible reason at all, and as a result of that choice to make an ill advised tactical error find yourself gambling with your life and that of another.
He may not be charged with a crime criminally (which he should not be IMHO), but Eakins' descendants may make their own choice to go after Cargill in civil court. Defense against as much costs time and money, which will not be refunded. Even if that does not occur he'll still have to deal with the psychological trauma of having been assaulted in his doorway, as a result of his own bad choice, and having killed a person.
- Janq would dial 911 and leave it to them to clear the stair way and check the opposite side of my door
"Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy
"A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing
December 24th, 2007 09:40 PM
This has nothing to do with the new laws that came into effect on Sept 1. Texans didn't have to retreat in their own homes prior to the new legislation either.
The new legislation took away the duty to retreat from ANY place where you had a right to be. Used to be if you were outside of your home, you had a duty to retreat. After Sep 1, that no longer applies.
December 24th, 2007 11:41 PM
The new legislation also protects the victim from civil suits, too! So,,,,, the idiots descendants cannot sue the victim in civil court. That's why it's such a great law. Why should the victim have to pay for the idiots stupidity. THIS LAW PROTECTS THE GOOD GUYS!!!!
Texans do not have to cower in their homes or be prisoners in their own homes because this law is on their side and not the criminals side.
AGAIN,,,,,,,,,,,, we all need to get behind this type of law and speak up for it and the good guys to the jury and voter pools! The pendulum is swinging back to common sense and we should be helping it.
Those states with Kennedys, Kerrys, Schumers, Clintons, Boxers, Feinsteins,Daleys,Bloombergs, etc., who wish to make the residents of their respective states subjects, will always fight this type of law because it means they will not be able to wield power over their subjects.
"It does not take a majority to prevail,,,,,,but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men." Samuel Adams
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