A set of cursed car rims brought about the death of one Texas man, and perhaps will result in the death of another. It it all very senseless and sad.
On Friday, a jury in Houston convicted Teddrick Batiste, 23, of capital murder for shooting Horace Holiday, the owner of some shiny chrome car rims that Batiste coveted, late one night in April 2009. Batiste and friend named "Loc" spotted Holiday driving around in his Cadillac and vowed, prosecutors say, to do "whatever it took" to acquire the rims. While driving down the highway, Batiste pulled up to Holiday and shot him, which caused the wounded man to lose control of his car and crash into a gas pump. Then Batiste stopped, got out of his car, walked up to Holiday, and started shooting.
Batiste admitted to the crime in a videotaped statement that was played during the trial. "I tensed up, and I shot," he told police during an interview. But during his trial, his attorneys tried to pin the shooting on Loc—who somehow remains "unidentified." It's not entirely impossible: innocent people do give false confessions—and the criminal justice system in Texas, as you might have heard, has some issues. Nevertheless, the evidence against Batiste was pretty damning:
After hearing the shots, Harris County sheriff's deputies at a nearby storefront rushed to the store and saw Batiste fleeing in the Cadillac.
He led police on an 8-mile high-speed chase, throwing a ski mask and a gun out of the window. An officer with spike strips eventually disabled the car, and Batiste surrendered.
Now that he's been convicted, the jury will decide whether to impose the the death penalty, which is what the state wants. That Batiste is also a suspect in another murder that took place at a tattoo shop in 2009—a fact that jurors will probably hear about during his sentencing phase—won't help him much.
If you would like to shake your head exasperatedly and say something like "Oh World, I do not understand you," you may do so at this time.