Jury selection began on Monday in the trial of an 86-year-old Killeen man accused of killing his 80-year-old neighbor almost two years ago, according to court documents.
Santiago Vasquez was 84 years old on May 30, 2017, when police said he shot and killed John Seth Jr., in the 2800 block of Fishpond Lane in central Killeen.
A court order limits what the Bell County District Attorney’s Office can say about the case.
The two men were next-door neighbors with a 4-foot fence separating their front yards. Seth’s family alleged that Vasquez had harassed Seth numerous times and that police were frequently dispatched to Vasquez’s home during the 12 years the two men were neighbors.
Police responded to a shots fired call around 3:13 p.m. on May 30, where they found Seth lying in the road with gunshot wounds, according to the Killeen Police Department, previously.
A witness told investigators Vasquez assaulted Seth with his cane, knocking Seth down twice. When Seth tried to stand up, Vasquez shot him three times, according to the arrest affidavit. Seth died at the scene.
Officials have not disclosed what led to the argument between the two men.
When Seth was shot and killed outside of his Killeen home in 2017, it was the second time in his life he had been shot, according to his family members. The first was many years earlier during the Vietnam War, when an enemy soldier shot him in the eye. He spent about a year in the hospital due to reconstructive surgery, but regained vision in that eye and went on to live a life as a truck-driver, father of 10 and avid do-it-yourself man.
Seth was “a real god-made man,” his stepson Mike Coleman told the Herald in June 2017 while standing in the front yard of his father’s home. “If you asked him for something, he’d give it to you. He made you feel as if you knew him for 50 years. It tore me up.”