Two men arrested in murder case of Texas high school athlete

Photo: Contributed to Caller-Times

Two men arrested in murder case of Texas high school athlete

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Two men arrested in murder case of Texas high school athlete

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A murder charge has been filed against one of two men arrested in Gavin McFarland’s fatal shooting.

Carlos Chumacero, 27, of Brownsville, Texas, was initially charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after he was arrested in Ingleside, Texas on Thursday morning.

A murder charge was later added, San Patricio County Sheriff Oscar Rivera said Friday.

Chumacero remained in jail Friday afternoon; the bond for his release totals $600,000.

Carlos Chumacero (Photo: Contributed, San Patricio County Sheriff’s Office)

Henry Roland Gonzales Jr., 33, of Sinton, surrendered to authorities and was held on suspicion of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. He posted a $100,000 bond and was released Thursday afternoon.

Gavin, a standout track and football athlete at Sinton (Texas) High School, was killed June 23 in St. Paul. Gavin’s father, Gabe McFarland, was also shot, but survived. He has since been released from the hospital.

RELATED: Texas high school athlete, father shot

Christine Kidd McFarland spoke with the Caller-Times Friday, just one day after scores of people converged on Sinton’s civic center to pay their last respects to her slain 16-year-old son.

Both suspects were in custody moments before funeral services for Gavin wrapped up.

The grieving mother said she was grateful to law enforcement for closing the case, but also singled out a good Samaritan, who reported the crime and guarded Gavin and his father with a shotgun until authorities arrived.

“When the funeral started, I wanted to ask (Rivera) … if he (gunman) had turned himself in. They had given him a deadline,” she said. “And by the time we got to the cemetery, Rivera said they had him in custody.

“That really … gave me a sense of relief to know (both suspects) had been caught.”’

Rivera said Chumacero is believed to be the gunman.

A third person, who the sheriff said drove the two men that night, was questioned by investigators. The pickup they were riding in has been impounded by authorities, Rivera said.

Funeral services for Gavin were held at the Terry A. Simpson Civic Center, the largest convention venue in Sinton. About 1,000 people attended.

Gavin was laid to rest later that day at the Sinton Cemetery.

Kidd McFarland said the community has “wrapped its arms around our family,” a response that she described as “a blessing and a comfort.”

“It’s comforting to know that the men that did this have been apprehended,” she said. “They used a lot of old-fashioned police work. Knocking on doors and that’s how they found these people.”

Kidd McFarland credited the work of the Texas Rangers — specifically that of Cody Lankford — the San Patricio Sheriff’s Office and Rivera in making the arrests. She also expressed gratitude for a man who found her son and ex-husband and “stood vigil” over them with a shotgun until help arrived.

The crime occurred near the man’s home.

“He and his wife were coming home. (They) came upon Gabe and he said, ‘be careful because they’re coming back, they said they’re coming back,’ ” Kidd McFarland said of the good Samaritan. “The man went in and got his shotgun and stood vigil and waited until the police (sheriff) came.”

“It makes me think more in humanity that there are still people out there willing to help others,” she said.

On Thursday afternoon, posts made by an account believed to belong to Gonzales were shared on Facebook prior to his arrest. The posts show Gonzales offering his condolences to the victims.

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Two men arrested in murder case of Texas high school athlete
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