Crime

Man thought to have accidentally shot brother to death booked on suspicion of murder

It appeared at first that Ricardo Del Gadillo shot his brother in the chest inside a west Fort Worth house on Sunday as the result of a mishap.

In the hours after the shooting, the 28-year-old man described it to two police detectives as an accident. Police suggested that perhaps it had been fueled in part by alcohol. Carlos Del Gadillo died, and his younger brother was booked on suspicion of manslaughter.

But detectives’ thoughts on the circumstances of the death have shifted, and they have concluded that the military veteran intended to shoot Carlos, who was 30.

During the most recent interviews, police investigators “were given information that solidified this as being an intentional shooting,” said Officer Buddy Calzada, a Fort Worth police spokesman.

On Wednesday, police booked Ricardo Del Gadillo on suspicion of murder.

In an interview Sunday morning, Ricardo Del Gadillo told detectives that he drank three tall Bud Light Lime beers before the shooting.

It occurred as the brothers were watching UFC fights in Ricardo’s bedroom in the 4600 block of Dilworth Court with two other relatives, he said in the interview. Ricardo Del Gadillo had been showing the others his rifle and XDM 9mm handgun.

“He said he was showing them how you hold the gun when he pointed the gun, was lining up the sights at a shelf, and he pulled the trigger,” Detective Paul Vega wrote in an affidavit seeking the initial arrest warrant for manslaughter.

Ricardo fired one round. Carlos fell to the ground.

Ricardo Del Gadillo and the other relatives put Carlos in a vehicle and drove him to a medical clinic, Complete Emergency Care, in the 6000 block of Camp Bowie Boulevard. They arrived about 1:30 a.m.

Ricardo said he applied pressure to his brother’s wound in the back seat on the way to the clinic.

Carlos Del Gadillo was taken in an ambulance to John Peter Smith Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

In the interview with Vega, Del Gadillo said he “always has the gun loaded with one [round] in the chamber.”

“Ricardo said he should have put the firearms away once they started drinking,” Vega wrote.

After Carlos was shot, Ricardo set the gun down in his room, the younger brother said. When they executed a search warrant, police found a XDM 9mm handgun on a table next to a bed.

A single 9mm casing was under a desk. What appeared to be blood was on the floor.

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Emerson Clarridge covers crime and other breaking news for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. He works evenings and reports on law enforcement affairs in Tarrant County. He previously was a reporter at the Omaha World-Herald and the Observer-Dispatch in Utica, New York.
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