One man with a gun and another in a confrontation

Everything Lubbock Mikael Thalen

‘Justice for Chad’: Family rallying on TikTok for man shot and killed in Texas

Police have declined to arrest or charge the man involved in the shooting.

 

Dan Latu

Tech

Published Nov 28, 2021   Updated Nov 29, 2021, 10:18 am CST

A shooting in Lubbock, Texas, has captured social media’s attention and spawned the “Justice for Chad” movement online.

A video of the victim’s family toasting to the victim’s memory has been viewed over 4 million times, with TikTok creators now demanding answers.

On Nov. 5, Chad Read was shot and killed by Kyle Carruth during a heated dispute over custody rights, according to news reports. Read shared children with his ex-wife, Christina, who was involved romantically with Carruth. 

In video released from the altercation, Read can be seen arguing with Carruth about the children. Carruth then walks inside and returns shortly after with what appears to be a shotgun.

The two men then come face to face, leading Carruth to fire a warning shot at the ground. A few moments later, a struggle ensues and Carruth steps and shoots directly at Read.

When authorities arrive, Read is dead at the scene.

Read’s family says it was a murder. Representatives for Carruth say it was an act of self-defense. But controversy is also stemming from the alleged inaction of the Lubbock Police Department and the Lubbock County District Attorney. 

Carruth has not been arrested or charged with a crime in relation to the shooting.

The Daily Dot reached out to the Lubbock Police Department for comment but did not receive a reply by press time.

Initially, authorities did not reveal Carruth’s name to the press until local journalists uncovered his identity through papers from his divorce filing. After his name was revealed, those records were then sealed from public view.

TikTok user Madison Luscombe, who identifies herself as Read’s stepdaughter, uploaded a video of her family gathering in grief and toasting to “Justice for Chad”.

“10 days ago our stepdad was shot and killed by a man with high profile ties within our community,” a caption on the post reads. “Please help us spread this story…”

@madisonfayeluscombe

We are tired, we are angry, we want justice. #justiceforchad @theweavess @natalie_weaver @Stephanie Kling McEw

♬ original sound – Madison Faye Luscomb

In a followup video, Luscombe reveals how the widespread attention on her initial post has translated into real-world activity behind the scenes.

“We have been reached out to by Youtubers, and TikTokers, and local media, national media, podcasts, the list goes on,” she says. 

“Kyle Carruth was named as the suspect in the shooting and killing of Chad yesterday in our local newspaper,” she continues. “Which is the first time in two weeks that he has been named by local media.”

https://www.tiktok.com/@madisonfayeluscombe/video/7032891862662794501?is_copy_url=1&is_from_webapp=v1

The TikToker says the family ultimately wants an investigation opened, but the increased press coverage is seen as a win. 

Justice for Chad supporters are also being encouraged to reach out to the Attorney General’s office to demand they open an investigation.

Carruth’s involvement with gun rights organizations has also drawn attention online. 

Shannon Watts, founder of gun violence prevention group Moms Demand Action, posted on Instagram and Twitter about the case. She identified Carruth as a leader of the Lubbock 2nd Amendment Coalition and a “gun extremist.”

On Twitter, Watts also pointed followers to a 2015 interview Carruth did on local radio, where he opposed gun-free zones and incremental safety measures. 

“It is absolutely unsafe,” Carruth says in the interview. “Gun-free zones have been shown to increase the likelihood of an active shooter.” 

Update 04:00pm CT, Nov. 28: In statements to the Daily Dot, Luscombe said that she wanted the public to known that Chad “loved his kids” and that while she and her family support the 2nd Amendment, they believe Carruth’s actions were totally unjustified.

Luscome added that she ultimately came forward to make the now-viral TikTok video after being encouraged to bring awareness to the incident by her friends.

“It had been over a week, there were no charges filed, he was never arrested on the scene,” she explained regarding the TikTok video. “We were mad. We were tired of sitting around and being quiet.” 

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*First Published: Nov 28, 2021, 1:55 pm CST