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A young woman who was eight months pregnant with her first child was senselessly gunned down over the weekend after leaving a Texas gas station.
Jennifer Hernandez, 20, was the passenger of a blue Nissan Sentra when fatally shot on Friday evening near Airtex Drive and Brundage Drive in Houston, according to Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez. According to ABC Houston affiliate KTRK, Hernandez was pronounced dead after being transported to an area hospital.
Authorities say another occupant — an unnamed 17-year-old whom authorities said was Hernandez’s boyfriend — also sustained multiple gunshot wounds in the attach, though he is expected to survive.
Investigators confirmed that Hernandez had been eight months pregnant with a child, who also did not survive the shooting.
It was unclear whether or not the unnamed 17-year-old was also the father of Hernandez’s unborn child.
“The couple had just left the Shell Station, located at Airtex & Ella, when a white four-door sedan with tinted windows and a paper [license] plate sped up beside them and fired multiple gunshots into their vehicle,” Gonzalez stated. “The shooter(s) fled.”
So far, there have been no arrests.
Sgt. Ben Beall of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office said the murder was a possible case of road rage, per KTRK.
“According to the driver, he said there was no interaction before that,” said Beall. “They did stop at the gas station just west of us here, and he said he has no idea where the vehicle came from. It just came out of nowhere, started shooting at him.”
A witness on the scene, identified only as “Rick,” spoke with KTRK reporters about what happened after hearing around seven gunshots ring out.
“[The suspect’s car] just flew off. It just kept going,” said Rick. “Like, they didn’t want to be a part of it. Understandably, they don’t want to be a part of it because they don’t want to be caught for the ignorance they did.”
Rick also detailed the final moments of Hernandez’s life.
“She was on the phone with her mom and kept saying, ‘I’m not going to make it, Mom,’” said Rick. “I called 911 and told them to get the ambulance because she was shot in the face.”
Rick said he got on the phone to speak to the victim’s mother, giving their location.
“Get here because I don’t think she’s going to make it,” Rick reportedly told the victim’s mother. “She’s telling you she’s not going to make it. I am pretty sure she’s not going to make it.”
According to Rick, the injured male teen “rolled” from the car, pleading that Rick help his girlfriend. Another witness said the boyfriend was wearing a black ski mask, though authorities confirmed with KTRK that the male was wearing a COVID-19 mask for health reasons.
Family members said Hernandez was expecting a son, and that a baby shower had been scheduled for the day after the tragic murder.
“We are absolutely devastated by Jennifer’s passing,” loved ones wrote on a GoFundMe page created for funeral expenses. “Nana was a wonderful daughter, a wonderful sister, and would have been a wonderful mother.”
Hernandez’s family told KTRK that the victim’s son was to be the first grandchild of the family and that Hernandez was about to open her own nail business.
Anyone with information is urged to contact the homicide unit of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office at 1-713-274-9100 or Crime Stoppers at 1-713-222-TIPS (8477).
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