Two Dead After Drug Deal Goes Wrong at The Phoenix

February 17, 2011 by · 1 Comment 

By Praveen Sathianathan and Aida Ahmed,

Police search a car at the scene of the shooting late Wednesday night. (PHOTO BY STUART PALLEY / SMU DAILY MUSTANG)

Two suspects are charged with capital murder after a drug-related shooting near Burger Street in the 5600 Block of Mockingbird Lane claimed the lives of two men Wednesday night.

The Dallas Police Department said Jason Greer Frappier, 24, and Chrisitian Avalos, 25, have been charged with capital murder in the shooting deaths of Chadwick Daniel Ryan, 27, of Arlington and Robert Manuel Allen, 29, of Dallas.

According to Dallas Police Lt. David Pughes, three men were sitting in a Jaguar and one man was outside the car when the drug deal went awry. Shots were fired and the two suspects ran away on foot toward the Phoenix Midtown apartments. Chadwick Daniel Ryan died at the scene. Allen was taken to Baylor University Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.

Frappier, who was shot in the elbow at the scene, was also taken to Baylor, where he is being treated and guarded by police. Avalos was arrested, taken to Lew Sterrett Justice Center and is refusing to cooperate with police officers.

The incident, which happened next to the Phoenix apartment complex, is suspected to be a drug deal gone awry.

Police found marijuana and money in the Jaguar, and after a search warrant was issued for an apartment in the Phoenix, a total of 30 pounds of marijuana was found. Three weapons were also recovered at the scene.

In a press conference held Thursday afternoon, Lt. Pughes said the two suspects were believed to be living in the apartment.

Management at the Phoenix declined to comment on the incident.

Witnesses nearby, including an off-duty officer who was stationed at the Kroger Grocery store about 50 yards away, came running to the scene.

Police are in the process of contacting 50 witnesses that saw parts of the shooting. There is also a surveillance tape from the nearby Kroger that may have the shooting on tape.

SMU issued a crime alert Thursday morning verifying that no SMU students were involved in the incident.

Disclaimer: The video below may disturb some readers. Watch at your own discretion.

VIDEO: Press Conference, Phoenix Shooting from on Vimeo.

Video by Praveen Sathianathan
Still Photography by Stuart Palley
Video Editing by Andy Garcia

Stay tuned to the Daily Mustang as this story develops.

Dallas Votes: Are ‘Dry’ Neighborhoods on Their Way Out?

October 22, 2010 by · 2 Comments 

Beyond the Bubble
Editor’s note: With early voting now underway for the Nov. 2 general elections, Dallas voters are deciding whether to eliminate ‘dry’ areas for alcohol sales. SMU journalism students examine the wet/dry debate, which supporters say will provide an economic boon but critics worry will bring more crime to their community.



By Ariana Garza

Dallas voters will head to the polls on Nov. 2 to determine whether alcohol “dry” neighborhoods will become a thing of the past.

The two measures up for a vote would eliminate dry areas for alcohol sales. The first measure would allow the sale of beer and wine – but not liquor – at grocery and convenience stores throughout Dallas. Stores that now sell liquor would not be affected.

The second proposal would eliminate the “club card” requirement at restaurants in dry areas. Currently, restaurants may not allow customers to buy drinks unless they show an i.d. and join a private “club.”

The measures would not affect bars currently operating legally, nor would they allow new bars to open where they are currently prohibited.

The first measure has become a source of conflict between wet and dry Dallas leaders and residents. Some anticipate new tax dollars from the sale of beer and wine while others fear that an expansion in sales in their neighborhoods would cause an increase in crime, prostitution and loitering.

In 1843, Texas passed one of the first local option measures in North America. The measure allowed local communities to vote on the sale of alcoholic beverages in their area. After Prohibition ended in 1933, some communities voted to go wet while others remained dry. But community members could still petition to hold a local option election to challenge the wet/dry status of their community.

Since 1937, twenty-nine local option elections have taken place, according to Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission reports. Some areas saw more than one election over the years and went back and forth between wet and dry. Today, many pockets of the city are dry.

“The local option election in Dallas next month is the largest we have seen in recent years,” said Carolyn Beck, director of communications and governmental relations of the TABC. “We eagerly await the outcome.”

Gary Huddleston, chairman of pro-alcohol group Keep the Dollars in Dallas and director of consumer affairs at Kroger, outlined two reasons the City of Dallas should abandon dry neighborhoods.

First, customers want the convenience of a nearby grocery store that sells beer and wine. Second, the passage of the proposal would contribute to an increase in sales tax revenue for the city.

“We think the residents of Dallas deserve the right to make the decision to sell beer and wine in convenience stores,” Huddleston said.

Formerly known as Progress Dallas, Keep the Dollars in Dallas began petitioning in April for a wet Dallas. The group’s website claims that making Dallas wet would attract more grocery stores, large retailers and, ultimately, “level the playing field and allow all neighborhoods equal access to economic development.”

The pro-alcohol website also argues that if Dallas becomes wet, the city could recover $20 to $30 million in sales taxes, mend its budget shortfall and prevent a tax increase for homeowners.

Dallas City Council member Steve Salazar, who represents District 6 and serves West and Northwest Dallas, including dry neighborhoods, opposes the upcoming election.

Salazar recalls his father’s description of West Dallas before the area went dry as impoverished, where “saloons,” prostitution and other vices were not uncommon.

“When it went dry, the place cleaned up and went somewhere else,” Salazar said. “A lot of people probably already forgot what it was like back then.”

Salazar spent his childhood in West Dallas and said that the area had a history of high crime before alcohol was banned. He worries that if Dallas becomes wet, a high concentration of beer and wine stores will accumulate in the western neighborhoods, as opposed to in North Dallas, which is also dry. Salazar said the proposal does not provide neighborhoods any protection against oversaturation of sales. He believes the high cost of starting a business in affluent North Dallas will discourage an influx of alcohol retailers there, sending them instead to lower income areas.

Salazar has seen wet areas where competing beer barns coexist.

“Even when its 40 degrees outside, you’ll see girls standing in their bikinis with furry coats on—across from the McDonalds Playplace—enticing people to come in and buy,” Salazar said.

Salazar fears that if West Dallas becomes wet, every corner gas station will soon become a beer barn and will deter prospective residents from moving there.

While the majority of Salazar’s constituents are against the proposal, a significant percentage is in favor.

Salazar attributes the pro-alcohol percentage to voters who are not well educated about the issue and may not realize the potential consequences the proposal could have on their neighborhoods. He also worries that some precincts and boundaries on the current wet/dry map are ambiguous. If that is the case, he fears that residents will unknowingly vote on the issue when the result will not affect them.

While North Dallas may see new or expanded grocery stores like Tom Thumb and Kroger, these businesses have already stated that they have no intention of developing stores in West Dallas, Salazar said.

Huddleston disagreed with Salazar’s claim that Kroger does not plan to build in West Dallas.

“The passage [of the alcohol proposal] would open up more areas for development,” Huddleston said.

Kroger does not restrict its development to certain parts of Dallas and looks at sites within the entire city, according to Huddleston.

The Daily Update: Thursday, August 26

August 26, 2010 by · Comments Off 

The Daily Update: Thursday, August 26 from on Vimeo.

Big D Blog: Guns For Groceries

March 3, 2009 by · Comments Off 

Posted by Christina Geyer

How about this: I’ll give you my gun, if you give me a $50 grocery store gift card. Apparently several Dallas gun owners were partaking in this great game of quid-pro-quo this weekend.

Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway’s gun exchange program, held at Reunion Arena, brought in 147 rifles, shotguns and handguns. All this was in exchange for some Kroger cash. I guess in this recession, food takes priority over guns.

A diverse crowd brought in their guns for a 20 minute inspection before being rewarded their gift cards. All they had to show was their driver’s license.

Some participants credited their donation to lack of gun use and family safety. But I have to imagine that a week’s worth of groceries, in a dicey economic climate, would prompt many to trade in their useless firearms.

For more on this, check out a similar story on