A High School coach was gunned down outside a youth football game in Texas following a family dispute.
Derwyn Lauderdale, 29, who worked as a football coach and teacher at Travis High School in Richmond, Houston, died after being shot in the stomach in a parking lot in Rosenberg, Texas on Saturday.
Lauderdale was rushed to hospital with a single gunshot wound to the abdomen but medics were unable to save him, ABCNews reported.
The suspected gunman, James Hamilton, 28, of Houston, is said to have shot Lauderdale outside the Seabourne Creek Sports Complex, where young people were preparing to take part in a football game.
Police said the shooting was related to a family feud between the two men, though they did not announced the reason for the quarrel. They did, however, announce that Lauderdale was the step-father of Hamilton’s children.
Derwyn Lauderdale, 29, (left) died in hospital on Saturday after being shot by James Hamilton (right), police said
‘What a sad set of circumstances that took place during this event. Children came to play a game they love, only to have it ruined by a career criminal committing an act of family violence,’ Rosenberg police Chief Jonathan White said at a news conference.
‘Our thoughts and prayers go out to those affected by this tragedy and we will pursue appropriate charges so justice may be served.’
On arrest, Hamilton was found with a handgun in his possession. The weapon had been reported stolen by the Houston Police Department, officials said.
The 28-year-old had an extensive criminal history, according to police, with offences ranging from the unlawful carrying of a weapon to terroristic threat causing fear of imminent serious bodily injury.
A witness told ABC affiliate KTRK she saw a black Mercedes pull up alongside Lauderdale’s car.
Seabourne Creek Sports Complex, Rosenberg, Texas, where a gunman fired on a school teacher and football coach on Saturday
Travis High School pictured) principal, Sarag Laberge, said: ‘Dear Tiger families, I am writing with a heavy heart, after learning about the tragic and sudden death of a Travis High School staff member’
She added she saw Lauderdale get out of his vehicle with a child and approached the Mercedes before Hamilton shot him dead.
The child accompanied by Lauderdale began crying uncontrollably after the attack.
‘Very unfortunate. We found that Derwyn Lauderdale was the stepfather to James Hamilton children and one of the children were actually there to play football yesterday and unfortunately had to witness the event,’ Chief Jonathan White said.
‘The suspect James Hamilton ran into the crowd and acted as he were a spectator and didn’t know what had occurred,’ Chief White added.
Travis High School principal, Sarag Laberge, confirmed Lauderdale’s position as a first-year teacher at the school and an assistant coach on the varsity football team.
In a statement, Laberge wrote: ‘Dear Tiger families, I am writing with a heavy heart, after learning about the tragic and sudden death of a Travis High School staff member.
‘This news has shocked our THS community and has left us heartbroken for his family. While we do not have additional information to share at this time, I want to make you aware and ask you to join me in keeping his family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.’
Lauderdale is pictured playing for the SouthWest Baptists Bearcats in an undated photograph
Lauderdale once a member of the South Baptist University Football, where he was lauded as of the best wide receivers to play at the college.
After he finished playing, he helped coach during the 2018-2019 seasons.
‘We are stunned by this news,’ SBU Director of Athletics Mike Pitts said.
‘Derwyn had been a member of the Bearcat Family for nearly a decade and we will miss him. Our hearts, thoughts, and (especially) prayers go out to Derwyn’s family and to the coaches and players of SBU Football.’
‘Words can’t express the loss we’re feeling right now as a Bearcat Family,” said Head Football Coach Robert Clardy.
‘Derwyn leaves a legacy here that will never be forgotten by his former teammates and coaches. He was a great friend and mentor to all.’
Lauderdale has his name written all over the SBU record books, ranking in the top 10 in five career categories.
‘ He ranks third in receptions, third in receptions per game, fifth in receiving yards, seventh in receiving touchdowns, and ninth in yards per catch.
‘He also ranks third in single-season receptions, and third in most receptions in a game. Please keep the Lauderdale family in your prayers.’