Man killed by DeSoto police is identified

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by CARLA WADE

WFAA

Posted on March 24, 2013 at 11:04 AM

Updated Sunday, Mar 24 at 4:48 PM

LANCASTER — DeSoto police shot and killed an armed suspect after a traffic stop in neighboring Lancaster on Saturday evening.

The Dallas County Medical Examiner's office identified the dead man as 70-year-old Abel Reyna Jr. of Pharr, Texas.

The sequence of events started outside a DeSoto residence where, police said, someone called in a report of shots being fired.

When officers arrived, Reyna fled in a red pickup truck — and police followed.

That pursuit ended with gunfire in the parking lot of the Spanish Trails Inn at the northeast corner of Interstate 35E and Pleasant Run Road in Lancaster.

At that moment, 15-year-old Samuel Myer saw right in front of him what he'd only seen on TV before Saturday. He said the man who stepped out of the truck was confronted by two officers with guns drawn.

"All of a sudden they say, 'Put your hands up!' And then — all of a sudden — you hear, 'Put the gun down!' ... and shots."

Samuel and another youngster ducked behind a truck in the parking lot. He said he heard at least three shots.

Fearing they'd be hit by stray bullets, Samuel banged on his family's motel door.

"By the time my dad opened the door, they already fired the last shots," he said.

Vanessa Harrington was in her motel room with her daughter. "The walls are really thin, and so it just sounded like it was right there," she said. "By the time I came outside, it was already over with."

Harrington was confronted with the sight of Reyna's lifeless body.

"It's a surprise to see someone dead on the ground, but as far as the crime and just the shooting, I wouldn't be surprised if it happens again," she said. "I just think that this area brings bad people, and when you have bad people, bad things happen."

The Texas Rangers are assisting in this investigation because it crossed two jurisdictions.

Police have not yet said what happened at the home in DeSoto prior to the chase — other than it appeared to have been some sort of domestic dispute.

WFAA reporter Rebecca Lopez contributed to this report.

E-mail cwade@wfaa.com

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