Noelle Walker

Brother, Friend Defend Greenville Shooting Suspect

Shortly after the Hunt County Sheriff announced an arrest in a deadly shooting at a party outside of Greenville, the suspect's brother and friend were defending him in the Sheriff's Department parking lot.

"Who is he," Gabriel Gonzales asked talking about his older brother, 33-year-old Brandon Gonzales. "He's not that person they're making him out to be. That's not him. I know my brother. It's not him."

The Hunt County Sheriff's Office backed up Gabriel Gonzales' claim on Nov. 5, when they released Brandon Gonzales after "exculpatory evidence" came to light.

Gonzales was arrested Monday morning on suspicion of capital murder for the deadly shooting around midnight Saturday at The Party Venue outside of Greenville. The Hunt County Sheriff's Department estimated 750 people were at the party when Gonzales allegedly opened fire, killing two people and injuring six. Another six people were injured trying to escape.

"I didn't see nobody. I didn't see the guy," Zach Bowen said. Bowen said he and Gonzales went to the party together. "I know for a fact it wasn't Brandon."

Both Bowen and Gonzales' brother insisted they arrested the wrong person for the shooting. Bowen said Gonzales wore a tactical vest to the party for fashion, but said it did not have bullet shielding plates in it.

"As far as them saying Brandon did the shooting, it's actually letting the person who actually did it feel more comfortable," Bowen said. "Whoever the real shooter is, he feels like he's off."

Hunt County Sheriff Randy Meeks said Gonzales was being cooperative "to an extent" in that he admitted to being at the party, but has not admitted any role in the shooting.

"I need more facts," Gonzales' brother said holding back tears. "I need all of his friend that was there with him. I need everybody. If you was there, I need you right here."

Gonzales is being held on $1 million bond.

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