KATY/HARRIS COUNTY (Covering Katy News) – A Katy area murder committed during a road rage incident has racial undertones, and the accused killer bragged about being a member of the Bloods gang according to a court document.
According to the complaint filed by prosecutors, Dietrich Thomas told his victim “you are just a white boy from Katy,” who wasn’t going to do anything to defend himself. A short time later he shot chased down Eric Starr and shot him to death, according to prosecutors.
Starr was not “just a white boy.” He was a man with a wife and children and his murder is causing them immense pain.
Starr’s youngest son is reportedly struggling with the death of his father and so is his wife.
“We weren’t finished living our lives together,” Anastasia Starr told KHOU 11 News.
Since the murder occurred one week ago, Thomas has turned himself in and is locked away at the Harris County Jail. He was denied bail because he was already out on bond for an aggravated assault with a deadly weapon charge. Had his bond been denied in that case, Thomas would not have been on the street last Saturday. It’s a fact that bothers Thomas’ wife Anastasia Starr.
“If he had already committed a crime like this before, then why did they ever let him go,” Anastasia asked during an interview with KHOU. “They [the court] could have prevented so much.”
Anastasia also said that she would not wish her pain on anyone.
The accused killer turned 23-years-old on July 1 and during his short life he’s been charged with numerous crimes, most of them related to firearms.
Following the murder of Starr, apparent gang graffiti has been painted near the scene of the killing. We have photos below. A concerned Covering Katy reader made us aware of the graffiti and said it appeared after the murder of Starr.
Anastasia told detectives that she was riding in the front passenger seat when her husband accidentally cut off Thomas. Starr was driving a Toyota. Thomas was behind the wheel of a Dodge Charger that was rented in his mother’s name. The rental agency told detectives that the Charger was more than two-weeks overdue.
At the intersection of North Mason Road and Park Row, Anastasia told detectives that Thomas pulled alongside of the Starr family vehicle and an argument took place between the two men. She stated the black male in the Charger told her husband that he was a member of the Bloods gang and that her husband was just “a white boy from Katy” and he wasn’t going to do anything to defend himself. Anastasia said Thomas also displayed a handgun. She says her husband got back into his car and was fearful that Thomas would follow them home. Starr made the fateful decission to pull over at the intersection of Mason and Morton Ranch Road. He exited the vehicle.
“He instructed his wife to continue driving if the suspect stopped to confront him,” the court document states.
According to Mrs. Starr, Thomas stopped his vehicle and immediately confronted her husband. She said Thomas tackled her husband, shot him once and drove away.
Starr was taken to the hospital where he died from a gunshot wound to the chest. The detective told the court he also suffered trauma to the head from the fight.
Witnesses to the fight confirmed what Mrs. Starr told deputies according to the court document. Detectives also interviewed an additional witness who said he observed the Charger aggressively chasing the Starr family vehicle.
Anastasia used her phone to photograph the license plate of the vehicle and she provided detectives with a description of the shooter and the car.
Two pieces of evidence were also found at the murder scene. A broken laser sight, which is normally attached to a handgun, and a key fob with a tag indicating it belonged to a car with the license plate KYB-8378. The fob also had a tag with the words “black Charger” on it. That led detectives to Avis where the car was rented.
All of the witnesses picked Thomas out of a photo lineup that featured pictures of other black men with similar characteristics, according to the court document. They all said Thomas was the man who killed Starr.
Thomas has been charged with murder. At this point there is no date set for his next appearance in court.
BELOW: See additional photos and our previous story about this case.