Third Teen Sentenced Over Cowtown Whataburger Shooting

Photo from the crime scene | Image by NBC 5 DFW

An 18-year-old male has been sentenced to 13 years in prison after a shooting that took place outside a Whataburger that resulted in the killing of an R.L. Paschal High School student and the wounding of another in Fort Worth last year.

Daniel T. Reed, who was 17 at the time of the shooting, was arrested in January 2023 in connection with the event and faced a charge of murder. However, as part of a plea deal, Reed pled guilty to aggravated assault.

Reed was the last of three teenagers to take a plea deal over their involvement in the shooting, as previously reported by The Dallas Express.

Isaiah Nuñez, who was also 17 at the time of the shooting, received a 35-year sentence in February after pleading guilty. In addition, he received a 15-year sentence for aggravated assault causing serious bodily injury to Zechariah Treviño’s cousin, as reported by The Dallas Morning News.

The third teen involved was accused of driving the car that brought Nuñez and Reed to the shooting. The 16-year-old, whose name was not disclosed due to him being a minor, received a sentence of 120 days of incarceration, 10 years of probation, and a $1,000 fine for two counts of aggravated assault, per a report from the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Both the female victim, 17, and her cousin, Trevino, 16, were waiting for their grandmother to pick them up from outside the Whataburger when the violence ensued.

According to an arrest warrant for Reed, the suspects allegedly targeted the teenage girl victim over a comment the girl had left on one of the suspects’ Instagram accounts that read “[Expletive] FMJ,” per DMN. The gunmen were reportedly in a gang called FMJ, the female victim told detectives.

The female was shot twice, while her cousin was shot eight to 10 times, reported DMN.

Erica Silva, Treviño’s mother, faced one of her son’s killers in court. Delivering a victim impact statement at the sentencing hearing for Nuñez, Silva told him, “You messed up your whole life by one mistake that you made. You not only took my son’s life but you took your own,” reported NBC 5 DFW.

In 2023, the murder rate in Dallas rose by 15% compared to the year prior, according to the City’s crime analytics dashboard. As of March 27, Dallas has already seen 50 reported murders this year.

The vast majority of murder victims this year have been ethnic or racial minorities. Of the 57 homicide offenses this year, 59.6% of victims were black, while 31.6% were Hispanic.

The Dallas Police Department has faced challenges in maintaining public safety due to a persistent shortage of officers. While the DPD employs just 3,000 officers, a City analysis recommends 4,000 to ensure public safety adequately.

The Dallas City Council has allocated a budget of just $654 million this fiscal year to the DPD, significantly lower than other high-crime jurisdictions in the country.

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