LUFKIN, Texas (KTRE) - On November 3, 2017, an innocent man just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Darrence Kindle was in the process of buying cigarettes when he was shot and killed during a robbery attempt at the Dollar General Store on Kurth Drive in Lufkin. The suspect in the case is still at large two years later.
“November 03 was the second anniversary of the murder of Darrence Kindle,” a bulletin on the Lufkin Crime Stoppers website stated. “The case remains unsolved but is actively being investigated by Lufkin Police Department, and until we, Darrence's neighbors, do our part, his killer will continue walking our streets.”
According to the Crime Stoppers bulletin, the killer wore a green Halloween mask, a dark-colored hoodie, light-colored basketball shorts, red shoes, and gloves. As a result, despite the best efforts of investigators, forensic evidence alone will not bring the investigation to a successful end.
“Repeated reward offers and requests for the community’s help have not yet yielded useful information, but Crime Stoppers will not give up,” the bulletin stated.
The Crime Stoppers bulletin pointed out that Kindle was not the killer’s target; he was a customer, “and any one of us could have been standing in his place when the masked, gun-wielding man entered the store.”
The video posted with the bulletin shows that the suspect tried to shoot Kindle and realized that the gun’s safety was on. He corrected the issue and then tried again.
“The killer was inside the store less than four seconds before firing a single shot at Darrence's head, killing him instantly,” the bulletin stated. “The murderer then tried several times to shoot the clerk, who could not open the cash register, but his gun malfunctioned.”
In the video, the suspect can be seen rummaging through Kindle’s pockets before the man leaves the store.
The suspect was described as a light-complexioned black man, the Crime Stoppers bulletin stated.
“Crime Stoppers knows that someone can solve this case and has reward money available to encourage them to help,” the bulletin stated. “Crime Stoppers has not put a limit on the reward; the amount will be based on the investigatory value of the information provided.”
Anyone with any information that could help solve Kindle’s murder is urged to click the “Solve This” button on the Crime Stoppers website, use the Crime Stoppers app, or call Crime Stoppers at (936) 639-TIPS. Tips and calls directly to Crime Stoppers are anonymous, and crime-solving tips may be eligible for a reward.
“Only anonymous, crime-solving tips that concern information not previously provided to or known by law enforcement are eligible for a reward but the entire process, from tip to reward, is anonymous; no one - not Crime Stoppers, not law enforcement, and not the community - will know who you are. Do your part.”