Suspect in trail ride party shooting captured, charged with murder

Deotis Gray, 24, charged with murder, has been jailed on a $1-million bond.
Deotis Gray, 24, charged with murder, has been jailed on a $1-million bond.(McLennan County Sheriff's Office)
Published: Oct. 26, 2021 at 9:37 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - Authorities on Tuesday announced the arrest of Deotis Gray, 24, on a murder charge after Gray allegedly opened fire with an AK-47 at a trail ride party, setting in motion a chain of events that led to the target of his gunfire being hit with a bullet and run over by a fleeing vehicle.

Gray was arrested Tuesday evening during a surveillance operation conducted by the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office’s FAST Unit and U.S. Marshals.

“I’m proud of how quick the FAST Unit and U.S. Marshals acted in catching this cold blooded killer,” said Sheriff Parnell McNamara.

When they caught him, they say he was walking in the area of Sanger and Highway 6 and was armed with a handgun.

Sheriff McNamara says Gray was out on three felony bonds.

“He’s a perfect example of why scumbags like him should not be released,” said McNamara. “He’s the poster child of why hardcore criminals should not be let out on low bonds, he got out, and he killed someone.”

His new bond has been set at $1-million.

The shooting happened shortly after 2 a.m. Sunday in the 5400 block of Orchard Lane in an unincorporated area outside Waco.

Investigators identified the victim as Scotty Stephens, 25. News 10 learned Stephens was attending the trail ride party at a privately-owned field shortly after 2 a.m. Sunday when Gray, dressed in camouflage and carrying an AK-47, allegedly opened fire.

Investigators with the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office said Stephens was the person Gray was targeting.

Several vehicles were struck by bullets, and the driver of one of the vehicles ran over Stephens while trying to flee the chaos.

Authorities say Stephens was shot in the head.

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