83-year-old accused of shooting stepson in Dayton

Manuel, Willard

A shooting around 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 29, in Dayton, resulted in charges being filed against the stepfather of the shooting victim, authorities say.

Willard Manuel, 83, and his stepson, Rodolfo Perales, 53, both of Dayton, were embroiled in a verbal argument that ended with Manuel reportedly pulling out a handgun and shooting Perales once in the abdomen.

Capt. David Meyers, a spokesperson for the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, said that a home health nurse who was at the residence at the time was able to administer first aid to the victim until EMS arrived on the scene.

The victim was airlifted to HCA Kingwood Hospital where he has since undergone surgery and is in stable condition, Meyers said.

Immediately after the shooting, Manuel was taken into custody and booked into the Liberty County Jail on a charge of Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon.

Willard is being held on a $100,000 bond.

According to Meyers, Manuel is on a walker and oxygen, but it is believed that the home health nurse who was on the scene was there for Manuel’s wife.

The shooting is still under investigation. Authorities have not provided a motive for the shooting at this time.

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Before creating Bluebonnet News in 2018, Vanesa Brashier was a community editor for the Houston Chronicle/Houston Community Newspapers. During part of her 12 years at the newspapers, she was assigned as the digital editor and managing editor for the Humble Observer, Kingwood Observer, East Montgomery County Observer and the Lake Houston Observer, and the editor of the Dayton News, Cleveland Advocate and Eastex Advocate. Over the years, she has earned more than two dozen writing awards, including Journalist of the Year.


  1. Hello I am the home owner and the fiancé of the victim that Willard Manuel shot. I’m not sure where you received your information but it is incorrect.

  2. Such a tragedy. They all have been neighbors for many years. Very loving family. Mr. Will, (Willard) his wife, treated everybody like Gold. Very loving couple. Their grandkids and our kids grew up together. I pray for all in the family, as this is an extreme shock. I am very sorry to all, as I did not even know his wife, which was like a 2nd Mom to us, was even sick. I know this was never in Mr. Will’s character. He was always a kind, gentle, and caring person.

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