2-year-old found dead inside stolen SUV after father was shot and killed in Houston, police say

A toddler in Texas was found dead in a stolen SUV after the baby’s father was fatally shot hours before, authorities said. 

The suspect in the deaths was caught on surveillance video near where the shooting happened. Police said in an update Wednesday that a 38-year-old manis being detained and faces charges of murder and tampering with evidence. The suspect is awaiting charges to be filed in court, police said. 

The incident began with Houston police getting a call for a shooting outside a supermarket on Tuesday afternoon, Houston Police Executive Assistant Chief Larry Satterwhite told reporters. Officers arrived and found a 38-year-old man shot to death.

Satterwhite said investigators believe the victim was meeting with someone when an argument broke out. A suspect shot the victim several times before stealing his SUV.

Less than five hours later, a woman called police to say her husband and 2-year-old child were missing. As the woman described her husband, police realized he was the victim killed in the shooting. 

“We never knew about the child until she called,” Satterwhite said. 

Police began to search for the SUV, and it was found 30 minutes later roughly 10 miles away from the crime scene with the child in the backseat. Life saving measures were performed but the child was pronounced dead.

“Sadly, it was too late,” Satterwhite said. “We don’t know why or how or what the cause of death will be. It could be something as like heat exhaustion. We just don’t know. That will be determined later through autopsy.”

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Authorities believe the suspect had parked the car and locked it before leaving it at the location. 

Satterwhite said “it’s the hardest thing to do” when dealing with deaths involving children, and offered his condolences to the mother. 

Follow Jordan Mendoza on Twitter: @jordan_mendoza5.