UPDATED: Friday, July 4, 2014 - 5:06pm
Houston (KTRK) — A preacher was killed in Houston after confronting a burglar. Investigators said the murder weapon was the homeowner's gun.
"It sounded like fireworks, just some black cats. We didn't think much of it. It being 4th of July."
Neighbors assumed the sound was fireworks; someone starting a 4th of July celebration early.
"Definitely frightening, frightening to know that kinda of stuff can happen anywhere."
As day broke over the quiet street, the shooting seemed surreal.
"I'm absolutely shocked."
Detectives said Donald Frazier, 69, awoke after he heard a noise in his garage at approximately 1:00 a.m. Frazier saw a man and then went outside.
"From what we're understanding, the homeowner actually tried to talk to the suspect for a little bit, trying to ease the situation."
Investigators said the burglar shot Frazier after a dispute between them escalated. Frazier's wife watched in horror and then called the police.
"I can't imagine having to witness something like that. We feel for the whole family."
Just one hour earlier, security guards stopped the 30-year old suspect. Harris County detectives claim security let the man go after he said his mother lived in the subdivision, leaving neighbors with the sad proposition, this killing didn't have to happen.
"It could have been a different story if it was an actual police officer who stopped the suspect at midnight."
Police haven't specified how the shooter got the homeowner's gun. The shooter's identity hasn't been released.