Affidavit: War of words led to deadly shooting of Fort Bliss soldier

El Paso News
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Court documents detail how a war of words between two Fort Bliss soldiers may have led to a deadly shooting.

A complaint affidavit shows the soldiers, Joe Cabral and Zachary McGuire, hadn’t even unpacked their belongings. The document continued to detail the alleged events leading to the deadly shooting in an apartment complex in the 10500 block of Shannon Place in East El Paso on Friday afternoon.

Police were called to the apartment around 4:30 p.m. after Cabral, 20, called 911 to report that his roommate, 21-year-old McGuire, shot himself in the head inside their apartment. Responding officers found McGuire’s body inside the unfurnished apartment with a single gunshot wound to the head. 

Police interviewed a neighbor who arrived at the scene shortly after hearing the gunshot. The affidavit shows the neighbor told police he walked into the apartment through an open door. He told officers Cabral also told him the victim had shot himself in the head.

The court records show Cabral changed his story once he arrived at EPPD headquarters after the shooting. It was there police said Cabral admitted the two were fighting and wrestled each other to the ground. Cabral told police that McGuire made him “tap out.” 

The documents state Cabral added McGuire called him a terrorist. He responded by accusing McGuire of sleeping with transsexuals.

Cabral allegedly told police that the two men grabbed each other by the shirt and were standing face-to-face when Cabral admitted to pointing his gun at McGuire’s head and pulling the trigger. 

EPPD investigators asked why Cabral initially told them McGuire shot himself. Court records show Cabral responded, “because I (expletive) up.” 

Cabral was taken into custody and charged with Murder. He is being held on a $1 million bond.

Both men were stationed at Fort Bliss as infantrymen with the 2nd Brigade Combat Team at the time of the shooting. 

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