Waco police are working to identify a shooter who opened fire in the parking lot of a smoke shop early Monday morning, killing one teen and wounding another.
Authorities said Dhaodrique Eastland, 17, was pronounced dead at Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center about 2:40 a.m., about one hour after suffering a gunshot wound to the upper torso in the parking lot of Eddie’s Smoke Shop, 1301 W. Waco Drive.
The assailant, who has not been identified, also shot 19-year-old Ra’Hideame Washington — known to many as Ray Washington — in the forearm, according to police.
Washington, a senior at University High School and a standout on its basketball team, was released from the hospital, his arm bandaged, by Monday afternoon.
Waco police officers were dispatched about 1:40 a.m. Monday to the smoke shop, which already had closed for the night, after receiving multiple calls about the incident.
The investigation indicated that the shooter approached the group on foot, fired several rounds, then fled on foot, Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said.
What led to the attack remained under investigation by detectives in the Special Crimes Unit late Monday, the spokesman said. Swanton said he didn’t have many details about the shooter’s description Monday afternoon.
Eastland, who several acquaintances said went by the name Bam Johnson, attended both Waco and University high schools in the past, but most recently was a student at the McLennan County Challenge Academy, which is part of the Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Program, according to Waco Independent School District spokesman Dale Caffey.
Washington played guard for University High’s basketball team, earning District 8-4A MVP and first-team Super Centex recognition this season as a senior.
Washington, who said he suffered two broken bones and would meet with a surgeon Tuesday, has known Eastland for most of his life, describing him as a “real cool dude.”
The University High basketball star said he plans to play basketball at Eastfield College in Mesquite and expects his injuries to heal in about six weeks.
Washington said he and about a dozen other friends were talking in the parking lot of the smoke shop when someone ran out from behind the store, he said.
His friends yelled a warning that the man had a gun, Washington said. As Washington turned, he was shot, he said.
Both Washington and his cousin ran across the street, where his cousin wrapped his arm in his shirt, Washington said.
Washington said he doesn’t know who was shooting, but described both himself and Eastland as being in the wrong place at the wrong time. He added that Eastland was “loved by a lot of people.”
“He never went looking for trouble,” Washington said of Eastland. “But trouble always came to him.”
An immediate family member of Eastland could not be reached for comment Monday evening.
Robert Callahan, an acquaintance of Eastland and his family, said his heart was “cut at the realization that such a special young man was ripped from our lives so senselessly.”
“Our thoughts are with his family, to whom we are available,” he said in a phone interview. “We pray God’s strength over them that they would find themselves surrounded by friends in their time of need, and that justice and grace will ease their grief.”
Eastland’s death is the first homicide of the year in Waco, Swanton said.