Alleged gunman awaits extradition hearing; bond set at $1M for fatal shooting of woman

Published 12:36 am Friday, June 23, 2023

A man who allegedly shot a woman in Port Arthur and was apprehended in Louisiana with the victim’s body in the passenger seat is awaiting an extradition hearing.

Eric Martin, 38, was arrested Monday in Lafayette on a Port Arthur warrant. He is a suspect in the fatal shooting of Shekira Simpson, 31.

It was originally reported Martin and Simpson are from Port Arthur but both are from Houston with ties to Port Arthur, authorities said on Thursday.

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Port Arthur Police Chief Tim Duriso confirmed Simpson’s body was in the passenger seat when he was apprehended. It is not known if she was already deceased when he first fled the area, Duriso said.

Martin remains in the Lafayette Parish Correctional Center, according to the jail roster there.

Duriso said Martin is expected to go before an extradition judge in Louisiana Friday (June 23) and afterward he would be returned to Texas.

If Martin challenges extradition he would remain in Louisiana for a week, possibly two.

Investigators are working to sort out the timeline for the violence that occurred Monday. What is known is that at approximately noon police responded to the shooting of a female in the 2800 block of 15th Street and to the 1600 block of Vicksburg, where a man identified as Leon Davis of Port Arthur was found shot in the back. He was last listed in stable condition.

Justice of the Peace Ben Collins Sr. set Martin’s bond at $1 million for the fatal shooting of Simpson. He said when the warrant is issued for the aggravated shooting of Davis then another bond would be set for that charge.

Police put out a notification looking for Martin saying he was driving a black Hyundai SUV. Duriso said the notification was distributed in Texas and surrounding states.

Police are not saying if the vehicle is registered to Martin or Simpson, as the case is under investigation.

Duriso said Martin and Simpson were acquaintances and may have been dating. Police also said Martin and the male victim were friends.

The motive for the shootings is under investigation.

Justice of the Peace Tom Gillam III said Simpon’s body has been in Jefferson County since Monday. He said he does not have an autopsy report as of Thursday morning.

Duriso spoke on the death of Simpson saying she was a mother and a daughter who died over something senseless — “there is nothing to excuse it.”