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Police Release Sketch Of Man Wanted In Slaying Of Child In Texas

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This sketch provided by the Harris County Sheriff's Office in Houston, Texas, shows an artist's rendition of the suspect in the fatal shooting of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes on Sunday in Houston. AP hide caption

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This sketch provided by the Harris County Sheriff's Office in Houston, Texas, shows an artist's rendition of the suspect in the fatal shooting of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes on Sunday in Houston.

AP

The Houston Sheriff's Office has released a composite sketch of the man wanted in the killing of 7-year-old Jazmine Barnes.

In a press conference Thursday, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzales said the suspect is described as a thin white man in his 30s or 40s, wearing a black hoodie, with pale skin and blue eyes. What police originally described as a beard "looks more like a 5-o'clock shadow," he said.

The shooting occurred early Sunday east of Houston, while Barnes, who is black, was riding in a car with her mother and three siblings. As NPR's Ian Stewart reported, police say the man in a reddish pickup truck pulled alongside their car and started shooting. Barnes died at the scene. Her mother, LaPorsha Washington, was shot in the arm, and Barnes' 6-year-old sister was injured by shattered glass, NPR reported.

"We're not going to rest until we find justice for Jazmine," Gonzalez said. He referred to a reward of $100,000, offered by social justice activist Shaun King and Houston attorney Lee Merritt.

JUSTICE FOR JAZMINE – The reward to catch her killer is now at 100,000 dollars! Her funeral is set for Tuesday. Details here -> https://t.co/jqCinFXOu9. Please share! @shaunking @MeritLaw #BREAKING #abc13 #hounews pic.twitter.com/n7Fkz0EMtf

β€” Steve Campion (@SteveABC13) January 3, 2019

Police don't yet know if the incident was racially motivated, Gonzalez said during the press conference. "Motive, to us at this point, almost becomes a secondary thing," he said. "It's a whodunit right now. So once I determine who did it, and where this vehicle is, then we'll understand motive a little bit better."

Gonzalez asked that anyone with information that could lead to the suspect call the sheriff's office at 713-221-6000 to help "find this coward of a killer, this person that does not need to be on our streets."

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