Man arrested with semi-automatic rifle at Market Square hour before deadly shooting, records show

SAN ANTONIO – A deadly shooting that occurred in Market Square during a Fiesta event Sunday was one of multiple incidents where police found firearms in the crowded plaza, according to records obtained by KSAT.

At least two other men are facing firearms charges after being arrested at Market Square during the annual celebration, including one that happened about an hour before the shooting that left two men dead and four women injured early Sunday morning, records show.

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Semi-automatic rifle found on man an hour before deadly shooting

In that instance, 18-year-old Joshua Hernandez was arrested on a charge of unlawful carry of a weapon shortly before 11 p.m. at Market Square during Fiesta De Los Reyes, a police report shows.

Hernandez was found in possession of a .223 semi-automatic rifle, sources told KSAT.

Police were tipped off by a witness who said they saw Hernandez with his hand on a firearm, the report said. Officers detained him without incident and located the weapon, the report said.

Bexar County Court Records indicate that he has since been released on bond.

Shooting leaves 2 dead, 4 wounded

About an hour later, at the same event, an argument that turned into a shooting ended with two dead and several injured.

Police said officers near the stage heard a gunshot and saw 18-year-old Mikey Valdez running away. While two officers ran after him, one officer said he saw Valdez shoot 20-year-old Albert Cisneros Jr.

Two SAPD officers fired their weapons after seeing Valdez shoot at Cisneros. Both men were killed.

Four bystanders, all women, were also shot at the scene, according to police.

Days before, a gunshot heard in Market Square crowd led police to man with pistol

Several days before the deadly shooting and the separate arrest of Hernandez, police officers working at the same location heard a gunshot near a music stage under Interstate 35, according to an SAPD incident report obtained by KSAT.

Two officers detained 18-year-old Geramy Aiden Lara after observing him reaching into his waistband as he walked away from the stage, the report said.

A revolver and a plastic bag allegedly containing cocaine were taken out of Lara’s pocket, the report said.

Two women came to the police and reported being hit by a bullet, the reports said.

It isn’t clear if Lara was the one who fired a shot because police found six live rounds with no spent casings in his revolver, according to the report.

Lara was charged with possession of a controlled substance and unlawful carry. According to Bexar County Court Records, Lara posted bonds for both charges.

Police, organizers say more security is needed

In 2023, a 25-year-old man was shot after an altercation during Fiesta De Los Reyes. He would recover from his injuries.

This year, after Sunday’s deadly shooting, San Antonio police and event organizers said they are working on measures to counter the violence.

Chief William McManus took to Facebook Monday to answer questions about the shooting; however, all of the questions were asked by a public information officer with SAPD and no opportunity for local journalists were provided.

KSAT has requested an interview with McManus about the Market Square violence.

Police have not commented on the other instances of firearms being found this year at Market Square.

Related coverage on KSAT:

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