Man accused of killing Texas sisters caught after bus ride to California, cops say

An accused killer on the run took a bus from Texas to California — where police were waiting for him, according to officials.

Alvin Charles McKnight Jr., 41, was taken into custody at about 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 15, by San Bernardino police, Upshur County Sheriff Larry Webb said in a news briefing, which was shared by KLTV.

McKnight is accused of fatally shooting two women, 35-year-old Mandy Ray and Dermetrica Dashaunda Waters, 37, on the night of Nov. 4, McClatchy News previously reported. Despite widespread search efforts, McKnight eluded capture for about 10 days.

The women were sisters, the Gladewater Mirror reported.

Though officials haven’t said what may have motivated the killings, the sheriff’s office called it “an act of domestic violence,” McClatchy reported.

“Upshur County has been really turned upside by this tragic event. I know many citizens have been on edge about what has happened and concerned about their safety,” Webb said.

On the evening of Tuesday, Nov. 14, investigators learned McKnight was taking a westbound bus to California, Webb said, adding that although authorities knew where he was, they didn’t immediately pursue him out of concern for the safety of others on the bus.

Instead, officials allowed McKnight to make the full trip — a distance of about 1,200 miles — while getting in contact with local police at his destination, Webb said.

During the investigation, authorities learned of a new phone number belonging to McKnight and were tracking him “in real time” as he rode west, according to Webb.

When McKnight stepped off the bus in San Bernardino, police sprang into action and arrested him at the bus station, Webb said.

McKnight is currently being held at a jail in San Bernardino, but officials are working to have him extradited to Upshur County, District Attorney Billy Byrd said at the briefing.

“Make no mistake, justice will be served in this case,” Byrd said.

While the search for McKnight was ongoing, deputies arrested his 38-year-old sister on a charge of hindering apprehension or prosecution, according to the sheriff’s office. She is accused of helping her brother evade authorities on the night of the killings, the sheriff’s office said.

But investigators say she likely wasn’t alone in helping McKnight.

“We believe there’s other people that have been involved,” Byrd said. “Rest assured … no matter what rock they’re hiding under, it will be turned over and every person that helped or assisted in any way … I will prosecute each and every one of those people.”

Upshur County is about 150 miles east of Fort Worth.

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