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Man wanted for Houston murder arrested in Zavala County, Texas

Authorities said Derrick Castille lied about his identity and tried to escape several times before he was arrested and identified as the capital murder suspect.

HOUSTON — A man who was wanted in connection with a deadly shooting in southeast Houston late last year was recently arrested in Zavala County, which is southwest of San Antonio.

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Derrick Wayne Castille was driving an SUV when he was pulled over for a traffic violation. Authorities believed Castille to be a suspect in a murder case out of Harris County, but they said he lied about his identity when he was questioned.

Authorities said he tried to escape several times before he admitted his real identity. He was arrested and taken to the Zavala County Jail.

According to the Houston Police Department, Castille is charged with capital murder.

The crime

On Dec. 10, 2022, James Blanton, 34, was in his driveway on Safeguard Street, near the intersection of Bellfort Avenue and Cullen Boulevard, when he heard a noise in the backyard.

According to investigators, when Blanton opened his garage, he was approached by two men who were wearing masks. Police said Blanton fought with the suspects and was shot during the struggle.

"He saw the suspects ... they were wearing, like, COVID masks when they were in the backyard," HPD Lt. Willkens said at the time of the shooting. "They weren't real sure what was going on."

Blanton was pronounced dead at the scene and police said the suspects ran away to a waiting car.

Four days after the shooting, 21-year-old Carl Michael McCloud Jr. was taken into custody. He's also charged with capital murder, according to police. Police said he was the driver of the getaway vehicle.

HPD investigators have not arrested the third suspect in the case.

Here's the update police provided at the scene of the shooting:

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