In Hunt County, the suspect who was arrested, charged and jailed in connection with a mass shooting in October 2019 filed a federal lawsuit seeking millions of dollars in damages against the county.
The incident took place at a private party venue just west of the city limits of Greenville. A gunman repeatedly fired at a crowded dance floor, killing two young men from the DFW neighborhood and injuring 12 others. Four of the injured were students from Texas A&M University-Commerce.
The shooting took place just after midnight on October 27e from last year. A day and a half later, Brandon Gonzales, 23, was arrested while working at a car dealership in Greenville and then held in the Hunt County Detention Center. Gonzales has been charged with capital murder. Gonzales was released eight days later on November 5e. All charges have been dropped.
Today, the Greenville Herald-Banner reported that Gonzales filed a lawsuit against the Hunt County Sheriff’s Department, Sheriff Randy Meeks, the Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Rangers Investigator David Armstrong and also the anonymous witness to the shooting whose testimony investigators say led them to arrest Gonzales.
Gonzales retained the services of lawyers Andre Wilkerson and Michael Campbell. According to the Herald Banner, “The 32-page lawsuit alleges multiple law enforcement violations, including false arrest, false imprisonment, malicious prosecution, abuse of process and the intentional imposition of emotional distress. “.
Hunt County Civil Prosecutor Daniel Ray said his office was briefed on the lawsuit this morning, but made no comment, as is common practice with pending litigation.
Witnesses to the shooting told investigators a gunman used a handgun and appeared to target a single victim before shooting others. The two men killed were Kevin Berry of Dallas and Byron Cravens Jr. of Arlington, both 23.
The Herald Banner described the lawsuit as saying Gonzales arrived at the party about an hour before the shooting, but quickly left the crowded building and returned to a friend’s car, where Gonzales made a FaceTime call with a friend in Paris, Texas. Gonzales says he was in the car when he saw people running away from the building in an attempt to escape the shooter.
According to a probable cause affidavit filed by the Texas Rangers, a witness provided information to law enforcement that led to Gonzales’ arrest. The witness has never been identified by defense lawyers or the public.
The lawsuit says Gonzales’ reputation has been ruined both locally and online. Gonzales lost his job following the arrest and moved to Florida shortly after his release. The lawsuit seeks damages totaling $ 3.15 million, as well as interest, costs and attorney’s fees.