JACKSONVILLE — Authorities searched this weekend for a man believed to have ambushed, then shot a 66-year-old woman Friday while she was preparing to make a deposit at the Austin Bank drive-in at 100 Commerce Street.
The victim — the only person injured in the shooting — was transported by ambulance to ETMC Jacksonville, and then taken to a Tyler hospital by helicopter ambulance after the 5:30 p.m. Friday attack, according to a news release issued by Jacksonville Police Det. Greg Compton. Her condition was not immediately available.
The victim, who authorities did not immediately identify, was shot without provocation or warning by the suspect — who was described as a black man wearing a red jacket. Police reports were unclear as to whether the suspect made off with the money the woman was carrying.
Numerous eye witnesses provided authorities with a description of a suspect. As of this weekend detectives were preparing a photo lineup for viewing by the various witnesses to positively identify the shooter.
Additionally, detectives expected to review video from Austin Bank and other surrounding businesses during an active followup of information provided by eye witnesses and the public.
"Detectives anticipate the arrest of suspects in this case in the near future," Compton states in the release.
This shooting is under investigation by the Jacksonville Police Department, the Tyler F.B.I. Office and the East Texas Safe Streets Gang Task Force.
Meanwhile, a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspect or suspects is being offered by the F.B.I. and by Cherokee County Crime Stoppers.
Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact local law enforcement: Jacksonville PD, (903) 586-2546; or the Tyler F.B.I. Office at (903) 592-4301.
Business owners are urged to be extra vigilant and report any suspicious persons or activity to the Jacksonville Police Department immediately.