Austin, Texas – Austin Police Department says officers were dispatched to multiple reports of shots fired inside a Northeast apartment complex late February 18th. One caller said that a man had been shot and had died outside their apartment in the breeze way.
Officers arrived at Creekside on Palmer Lane Apartments at around 10:30 p.m. and contacted an apartment resident who said three men had tried to rob him and his roommate at gunpoint.
The roommates said they heard a knock at the door and went to see who it was. When they looked outside, they saw 30-year-old Octaviano Rodriguez wearing a hard hat and safety vest. When they called to the unknown man asking who he was, Rodriguez only answered “City of Austin.”
As soon as the resident opened the door, Rodriguez forced his way in and put a gun to the back of the victim’s head. The victim’s roommate immediately ran to his bedroom where he grabbed a gun.
Rodriguez and his 2 accomplices, 30-year-old Casaundra Hernandez and 29-year-old Emilio Maisonet, entered the apartment and someone fired a shot at the armed victim who returned fire with 3 to 4 gunshots.
All suspects were struck by the gunfire and they turned and fled from the home. A witness says they saw Rodriguez, still wearing his safety vest and hard hat, running from the apartment.
Officers secured the scene and found Maisonet still lying where he fell to gunfire. He was wearing a mask over his face and black gloves. He was pronounced dead at 10:48 p.m.
Hernandez was found outside in a nearby breezeway where she had collapsed from her injuries and was unresponsive when officers approached her. When they rolled her over they found a gun lying underneath. She was pronounced dead 11:05 p.m.
Rodriguez escaped officers for a short time but was heard screaming for help behind nearby bushes. He was rushed to the hospital with a life-threatening gunshot wound to his leg. A witness who lives in the complex was able to pick him out of a photo line up confirming that he was the one running from the scene before officers arrived.
He has been charged with first-degree felony murder of his accomplices since his crime led to their deaths at the hand of the victim. He was booked into Travis County Correctional Complex on Tuesday and bail set for $250,000.
The entrances of your home are a popular place for criminals to launch their attack. They will attempt to do this by catching you off guard and as the example above proves, they are willing to use disguises in order to gain access to your home. Read here for the Door Ambush Video Training Series where the topic is fully addressed.