AP NEWS

Accused driver, gunman in rooftop ambush went to dinner after slaying brothers

March 1, 2019

The men accused of slaying two rivals in a rooftop ambush had dinner at Panda Express and went shopping after the east Houston shooting, court documents show.

Alleged getaway driver Rene Moreno, 20, and shooter Marlon Valdez, 18, both of whom face capital murder charges in the Feb. 21 shooting, drove two miles to the fast food chain in the black Tahoe used in the attack, police said, citing surveillance footage from the restaurant.

The two went to Walmart next so Moreno could buy a phone charger, Valdez allegedly said in a confession. The semi-automatic rifle used in the shooting was stashed in a black plastic bag in the back of the SUV throughout the evening, court papers show.

Moreno and Valdez are accused of luring the brothers Josue and Maximo Aguilar to the 12800 block of Eastbrook to get back at them for an earlier fight, according to investigators. The gunman, believed to be Valdez, was perched on the top of a vacant, flooded-out home waiting to ambush their vehicle. He texted the brothers and messaged them on SnapChat.

Josue Aguilar, 18, was at one point “good friends” with Valdez, but their relationship soured, according to police.

“Marlon Valdez told me the Aguilars’ had jumped him and he wanted to get revenge on them,” the investigator wrote.

The shooter opened fire on the brothers around 4:45 p.m. as they arrived. Josue was killed at the scene, while his 20-year-old brother, Maximo, was rushed to a hospital where he died. Their older brother and Josue’s girlfriend 18-year-old woman were wounded in the gunfire and are expected to survive.

Police found “several fired cartridge casings on the roof and a rifle magazine on the ground in the backyard” after the shooting.

Houston police Chief Art Acevedo last week called the shooting an ambush and said the culprits “shot these young people like they were deer.”

Valdez was arrested Feb. 23 at his mother’s apartment in the 600 block of Maxey Road.

Moreno, a former Galena Park High School student, was apprehended Wednesday. He appeared in court Thursday and was ordered to be held with no bond.

nicole.hensley@chron.com