A disturbing Facebook Live video shows the tragic moment when police say a man was accidentally shot in the head on Easter Sunday. 26-year-old Devyn Holmes, of Beaumont, Texas, was in the car with a woman, believed to be 25-year-old Cassandra Nickcole Damper, and another man who were playing with two guns when Holmes was shot at approximately 2:20 a.m, according to authorities.
As of Monday night, Holmes was reportedly in critical condition on life support at Ben Taub Hospital in Houston.
Damper stands accused of destroying evidence by wiping her hands of gunshot residue, and authorities said charges against her have been upgraded to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. There is also an alarming screenshot circulating between Holmes’ and the other man in the vehicle at the time of the shooting, which has left many wondering if the shooting was really an accident or indeed intentional.
Heavy spoke with the Houston Police Department, and also a close family friend of Holmes who said the victim’s condition was improving.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. He Was Shot in the Head While Being Filmed on Facebook Live
According to authorities, Damper was in the car along with Holmes and another man for approximately nine minutes before the alleged accidental shooting took place, ABC 13 reported.
In the video, the man can be seen being shot in the head, and his head slumps to the side as blood is seen spraying from the gunshot wound.
You can watch the footage below, but it is graphic and may not be suitable for all audiences. In the video, the man can be seen being shot in the head, and his head slumps to the side as blood is seen spraying from the gunshot wound. Heavy has blurred the video after the shot is fired, but an uncensored version can be seen here.
“You’re making me nervous,” Holmes could be heard saying in the video, which was captured outside of a Valero gas station on Almeda and Southmore in Houston.
“It ain’t got no clip, bud,” a man seated in the back of the vehicle states in the video. “Hey, where you from again…?”
“You see what we doing to lying a*s hoes, we draw down, we draw down on dem hoes…say something bi*ch!,” Damper says only seconds before she shoots a bullet into Holmes’ head.
“Oh my God,” a voice says before Damper and the other man quickly exit the vehicle.
2. Police Called the Shooting an Accident, Which Has Angered Many
In a chilling Facebook post dated the day before the shooting took place, “Cadillac Coleman,” whose profile posted the Facebook Live shooting, says “I got one for you trick.” Holmes replies, “Fukk u,” to which Coleman says, I’ll smash you boy.”
Police have not identified the man, and also haven’t said if he will face charges.
Holmes and Coleman were listed as friends on Facebook at the time of publishing.
“This sure looks suspicious after what transpired,” Jah King replied to the post after the shooting.
Heavy spoke with Houston Police Department (HPD) Public Information Officer John Cannon, who said investigators are looking into all angles. Cannon told Heavy:
Homicide investigators are looking into all information. The only thing we can do on the HPD side is to confirm if those are the things we are doing, including checking into that, and being aware of that post that he [Coleman] had made…it will go to the Harris County grand jury and they’re the ones who are going to decide once all of that evidence is gathered as to whether or not there will be additional charges filed.
Cannon said he assumed investigators are already looking into the screenshot, and assured Heavy that they will be if they haven’t yet already.
Initially on Twitter, Houston Police tweeted that a “man shot himself in [the] head.”
However, that status was later updated with the following: “UPDATE: We are aware of the video circulating on social media. The woman in the video has been charged w/ tampering/fabricating evidence. @HarrisCountyDAO will refer the case to a grand jury for determination of other possible charges.”
Many are not satisfied with the initial findings by police, and the screenshot showing the conversation between Cadillac Coleman and Holmes is beginning to circulate. Neisha Baddie wrote:
I found out what happened, dude in the back, Cadillac Coleman, set the dude up n the front seat Devyn Holmes He had beef with him the day before and you can see him nod to girl cassandra damper to pull the trigger. He threatened dude on fb the day before….but they tryna say it was an “accident”??♀️
“The disturbance appears to be kids playing with guns,” HPD Det. John Roberts stated, according to Fox 5.
3. Demper Was Arrested After Police Said She Tried Destroying Evidence by Wiping Gun Residue From Her Hands, & Police Say She Initially Claimed Holmes Shot Himself
Damper and the second man were later questioned by authorities, during which investigators bagged and tested their hands for gunshot residue. Police say Damper tried to destroy evidence by wiping off any gunshot residue that would have been present. She was subsequently arrested and charged with tampering or fabricating evidence. However, police announced April 4 that those charges were upgraded to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
Damper appeared in court April 4, as seen in the video below:
Authorities said the woman initially lied about what happened, claiming Holmes had put the gun to his own head before pulling the trigger, ABC 13 reported.
A grand jury will determine if the woman will face further charges, according to police.
Damper was born on June 2, 1992, as shown in the jail record above. Her Facebook pages, which have since been deleted, showed that she lived in Houston.
In one profile, Damper went by the name “Sandy Dee,” and Holmes was listed among her friends. The exact relationship between the two is not known at this time.
Both Facebook accounts were removed following the tragedy.
Damper does not appear to have any other active social media accounts, however she can be seen in a Youtube video playing music alongside a woman, dated February 24, 2014:
“Margaret taught music where Casandra attended school,” the video is captioned. “It was Parker Elementary in Houston. Margaret knew her in Kindergarten and then started teaching the dulcimer to her in the third grade.”
4. Loved Ones Said His Condition Was Improving, & a GoFundMe Account Has Been Set Up to Assist With Expenses
Holmes’ family and friends are asking for prayers, a source close to the family told Heavy, adding that the tragedy has brought the area together. The victim was reportedly in critical condition on life support as of Monday evening at Ben Taub Hospital in Houston, but he was said to be improving as of Tuesday.
“He is improving,” Roxanne Holmes, who identified herself as a close family friend, told Heavy April 3. “This tragic event with Devyn made Galveston County where he’s from come together as one, to unite and be there and pray for our own. All we gotta say is DON’T PLAY WITH GUNS THEY ARE NOT TOYS.”
Asked if she believed the shooting was an accident, Roxanne said she “cannot speculate,” and asked that prayers continue for Holmes.
Holmes’ father, Allen Tyler, said on Facebook that he was alert and responding to commands April 2.
In a heartwarming post dated April 4, the news became even more enlightening. Allen Tyler posted:
Good morning everyone,I just want to say the prayers, love, testimonies are extraordinary from my friends as well all the people from all over the world that have reached out to me and my family in this time in my son’s life. Thank you very very kindly and much and continue to know that we extremely and immensely appreciate the love.He’s on his road to recovery and your love and genuine concerns make that process all the more smooth. God bless you all.
“To me, he’s my backbone,” Kendric Holmes, Devyn’s brother told ABC 13. “To his whole family, whenever problems go down, he’ll be right there to pick us all up.”
Chās Martin is being hailed as a hero for helping to save Holmes’ life. In a touching Facebook post, he wrote, in part:
The day this occurred was actually a good day for me. I was tired but decided to go to a event that actually went well. Later on I started getting tired and almost left but decided to sit around and talk. All of a sudden I started to see people run away from the gas station and others walk to it. I could hear people saying ‘he’s dead, he’s shot’ in a very terrifying tone. Confused as I was I asked about 2 or 3 times what happened because I figured it wasn’t real. People were yelling “stay back stay back”, but I knew I couldn’t stay back. I told them ‘this is what I do, I have to check.’ I approached the vehicle and awaiting me was a young man that I’ve never seen before or knew nothing about. I had no emotional connection or ties to this brother but the situation was all to common for my line of work. As I started to assess him I checked for a carotid pulse… Nothing. I checked for a radial pulse… nothing. Deep in my mind I didn’t know what to do but it caused me to do what I was taught to do.
I screamed out ‘I need someone to help me pull him out the car’ multiple times but everybody was still in shock. Steven Boone Jr. said man I got you and pulled him out, shout-out to him understanding the extremity of the situation. My boy Andrew J Scott was right there and he’s a EMT as well and I knew he was going to ride with me even if it didn’t go as planned. I stared at this mans lifeless body and began doing chest compressions. Honestly, it’s not courage it’s DUTY. That’s what was told to me by a senior captain named Christopher McAllister after we talked about the situation. He said people will call you a hero, and courageous but remember its your duty! It messed me up because I didn’t know what was going to happen but I couldn’t not intervene. During compressions I started to pray and in my head I told myself I could possibly lose my job by identifying myself as a Houston firefighter(even being off duty) but is my job more important than this strangers life? I know people aren’t suppose to do that but I’m sure it was the only comforting thing to most people knowing that I was there. I decided to do what I thought he would want me to do and what his family would want me to do. Eventually I felt a slight rise in his chest almost like you see on the movies. It’s never happened before so I began to question my knowledge and assessment, then I figured God just decided it wasn’t his time at that moment. He made a very weird grunting sound that I’ll never forget or never heard.
I checked for a pulse and again and his heart was thumping like a marathon runner. I can’t remember to much but I remember calling HEC which is our office of emergency that dispatches calls. I began to explain and told them what was needed. I felt helpless, I wanted to cry, but I knew this situation was bigger than myself. It was also bigger than my job title. I kept it all in because that’s what we do as first responders but also as men. I knew one piece of uncertainty would lose everybody’s confidence in my ability to do what I was suppose to do. Deep down I was just praying to hear some sirens. When the ambulance pulled up (i’m assuming either 8s or 7s D shift, please let me know) I walked to the EO and gave a swift report as the in charge ran to do his assessment. I saw the engine pull up and I hoped on the back of the box to pull the stretcher out because I knew if a medic wasn’t there shortly they would have to meet them en route. I was so engulfed in emotion the captain from 7D had to tell me ‘hey man you can come out now, I think we got it from here.’ Comforting as those words were it was actually frustrating. I felt good because the pulses were back but I felt bad because I didn’t know him or have anyway of finding out if he’d hold up.
Driving home I cried, I got home and I cried, I slept for probably a hour and cried some more. I knew that God had to be there and he wanted me there even though I thought about leaving early. It’s amazing how God works and I’m glad he allowed me to be of service. But just know I may have been there Pre ems arrival but the crews who came and the doctors at the hospital are the real heroes. It’s easy to work someone when you are prepared for it, and when you have your crew with you. It’s weird when you are alone and you have to figure out are you going to do what’s necessary. Truthfully I was just a vessel that was there because God knew I was going to do the right thing. I don’t know if he’s okay, but I pray he pulls through and hopefully you all can let me meet and talk to him.
A GoFundMe account has been set up to help Devyn’s “medical expenses and future care.” At the time of publishing, $4,792 had been raised out of a $100,000 goal. You may donate to the fund by clicking here.
5. He Was Described as a Loving Father, & He Is 1 of 2 Shot Live on Social Media Within 24 Hours
Holmes’ Facebook page depicts a loving father who often took photos alongside his daughter.
“He has one daughter who he loves dearly…she is his world,” Roxanne told Heavy.
Holmes’ Facebook profile states that he “Studied at Lamar University,” after attending La Marque High School. The victim currently resides in Beaumont, but said he is from Galveston, Texas.
Family, friends and strangers have all taken to social media to send well wishes and prayers.
“I don’t know you but hope you pull through dude, shit is crazy and I hope you get to stick around with the rest of us on this ride,” Jay Sully wrote on Holmes’ Facebook page. “Be easy dude, sending good vibes :).”
“Praying for you Devyn,” Alisha Warren stated. “Praying for you and your family. Love from Memphis Tn.”
Holmes’ was one of two men shot via live social media streaming within a 24-hour period.
On April 2, police say an 18-year-old man from Detroit, Michigan, was shot in the head and killed, and the tragedy was streamed live through Instagram.
The man has not yet been identified, according to The Detroit News. He was said to have been home in the 17600 block of San Juan in northwest Detroit when an 18-year-old man allegedly shot him in the head.
“The suspect states he accidentally discharged a rifle, hitting the victim in the head,” Detroit police spokesman Dontae Freeman stated on Tuesday.
The suspect and victim were reportedly flashing money and guns before the shooting took place at approximately 11:55 p.m. Monday. The victim was dead by the time paramedics arrived at the scene, and the alleged shooter was taken into custody. The investigation is ongoing.
At a news conference speaking about school threats, Detroit Police Chief James Craig addressed the shooting. “(Social media) is not a toy,” he stated. “Let’s be safe. If you see something, say something.”