10-year-old witnesses grandfather’s road-rage death
On Texas Highway 61, at 9:30 p.m. Friday, Larry Dewayne Brinkley cut off another driver, Leslie Larrison. Sheriff's deputies later described the incident as dangerous, but no one was injured and it all could have ended there.
But when Brinkley, 56, pulled off the Chambers County highway to take his 15-year-old daughter to his ex-wife's home in Hankamer, Larrison, 54, followed. He parked near the driveway of the home on Barrow Cemetery Road and confronted Brinkley.
Children watched as the men argued outside - Brinkley's teenage daughter from his truck, Larrison's 10-year-old grandson from the other vehicle. Still, it all could have ended there.
But Brinkley allegedly went back to his truck, took out a handgun and then walked past the point of no return. He approached Larrison, pointed the gun at his head and shot him point blank in the jaw, authorities said.
Moments later, the man fled the scene, leaving his daughter behind at her mom's house. The teen called 911. When deputies arrived, they found the two children standing over the body.
"We had a road rage incident," said Chambers County Sheriff Brian Hawthorne, "that turned into murder."
After a short chase, Brinkley was arrested by a sheriff's deputy who found his handgun covered in blood.
Larrison's family and friends are having difficulty grasping what unfolded during his short drive from a friend's house.
"I am in a fog," said Larrison's wife, Kathy. "He believed in God. He is well-respected in the community."
Chambers County Sheriff's Department
Leslie Larrison's 10-year-old grandson watched from their vehicle Friday night as a road-rage incident turned deadly.
Larrison and two friends own a pipeline welding company, Cain's Welding Service in the Baytown area, that does work for several major oil companies in the region.
"He is the hardest worker and most dependable friend," said Larrison's business partner, Artus Standley. "We are all sick and sad about losing him."
Family said the young grandson who witnessed the shooting is dumbfounded.
Larrison's other grandson is recently deployed in Afghanistan. The family is contacting the Army to arrange for him to attend the funeral.
"It was hard for a mother to tell her son that his loving grandfather died," said Rachelle Riley, Larrison's only daughter. "He is my family's rock, my children's idol. He taught me everything."
Court records show Brinkley just went through a lengthy and complicated divorce. "He had a bad divorce," said Hawthorne, who provided civil standby while the former couple was separating.
Brinkley was held Sunday in Chambers County Jail on a $750,000 bail.
Authorities warn drivers to stay in their cars during road-range incidents.
"I don't recommend a citizen to confront another citizen," Hawthorne said. "You are always better to notify law enforcement."