PORT BOLIVAR — On Tuesday, relatives of two Houston women who were murdered last week gathered outside the Port Bolivar convenience store where the couple’s bodies were found to urge anyone with information on the double homicide to come forward.

Community activist Quanell X and family members of Crystal Jackson and Britney Cosby, both 24, handed out fliers with a police sketch of the man who authorities said was last seen with the two women.

The Galveston County Sheriff’s Office is searching for the person of interest, as well as Cosby’s vehicle, a silver 2006 Kia Sorento with gray trim.

Jackson and Cosby’s bodies were found near a metal garbage container about 7:45 a.m. Friday outside Fisherman’s Cove Food Mart in the 700 block of state Highway 87 on Port Bolivar, about a mile from the Galveston-Bolivar Ferry landing.

Cosby died of blunt force trauma, and Jackson died of a gunshot wound, according to the sheriff’s office.

After saying a prayer, Cosby’s grandmother spoke to reporters about the death of her granddaughter.

“It’s not right to take someone’s life and throw them away like garbage,” Patricia Nixon said.

Nixon said Cosby worked at a coffee shop and had hopes of enrolling in college to study to become a nurse.

“I’ve never known anybody to dislike her,” she said.

John Cooks, Jackson’s uncle, said his niece loved her family and loved being a mother to her 5-year-old daughter.

Cooks said he hoped the family’s plea would motivate someone with information to come forward.

“Justice has to be served,” Cooks said.

Detectives suspect the women were killed elsewhere before their bodies were driven to Port Bolivar and dropped off, although the sheriff’s office has not said whether the vehicle took the ferry.

Quanell X, who has made a name for himself, in part, by promoting a “no-snitch” policy to encourage residents to report crimes, said he hoped passing out fliers on the ferry would lead to a break in authorities’ investigation.

He said he suspected Jackson and Cosby’s killer would be familiar with the Galveston area and familiar with the ferry to the peninsula.

“Who would feel so comfortable to ride across the ferry with two dead women in the back of your vehicle without fear of being searched?” Quanell X asked.

The sheriff’s office is working to determine a motive in the killings and is continuing to pursue every lead, Maj. Darrell Isaacks said.

Detectives said Cosby and Jackson were in a relationship, but it’s unclear if their murder would be considered a hate crime.

Equality Texas, a gay, bisexual and transgender rights advocacy group, issued a statement Tuesday urging the U.S. Department of Justice and local law enforcement agencies to find the couple’s killer.

The statement cited a report by the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs that found that more than 73 percent of anti-LGBT homicide victims in 2012 were people of color.

Contact reporter Alex Macon at 409-683-5241 or alex.macon@galvnews.com.

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(17) comments

Terry Moore

This is so heartbreaking...I hope they find the person or persons. To brutally kill two young women shows how heartless and evil they are.

Lars Faltskog

It's very likely that if (and hopefully when) the suspects are caught, that they'll be tried for a "hate" crime.

Kevin Lang

And, more than likely, there will be some that object to the "Hate Crime" designation under the premise that if the victims were a couple of white college beer buddies that the accused couldn't also be subject to the death penalty.

I wonder which side QX will be on if it turns out that the perpetrator is an angry young homophobic black man.

Carlos Ponce

Texas has a "Hate Crimes" Law called "The Texas James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Act enacted into law in 2001 to classify crimes motivated by the victim’s race, religion, color, sex, disability, sexual preference, age or national origin." I agreed with Governor George W. Bush who argued that such a law was not necessary. In fact it DELAYS justice. The prosecution has to PROVE intent with respect to hate under one of the conditions given. Without the law, if found guilty the perp may be executed by lethal injection. With the law the perp may still be executed by lethal injection but at a much later date. It's a defense attorney's dream come true. Some would argue why worry about the delay if the outcome is the same? Tell that to the victims' families who face a prolonged trial.

Lars Faltskog

Well, carlosrponce:
Let's look at it by this angle -
If I had to be a surviving relative of an individual who had been murdered, I would very likely want each and every "tried" charge to be visited, reviewed, and administered in honor of the legacy of my loved one.

The "hate" crime measure is, for many, a socially conscious effort to transform our society (hopefully) into one that one day will not suffer from hate due to race/sex orientation, et cetera. I would think that MLK would be a proponent of "hate" crime measures. It's all about justice, in the theoretical sense.

Kevin Lang

Hate Crime laws were developed because perpetrators were able to convince juries that the black kid, gay person, disabled person, or whatever "deserved" to die because of their "deficiency". If a person kills someone at random, but winds up getting convicted under a hate crime, I'm not too sure how sympathetic I should be. After all, the person still CHOSE to kill another human being for no good reason. If they happen to be stuck waiting for an appointment with an executioner or waiting for their maker to come and take them back, they still made their own bed. If a guy kills someone because he poured/spilled a drink on his ostrich boots, or because he made a pass at him, or because she rejected his come-on, he's still a malicious individual that has demonstrated an ill-suiting to living in a civilized society.

If the state goes for Hate Crime, and the jury doesn't buy it, the jury can just convict on what is proven.

Kevin Lang

Of course, this is all presupposing what the perpetrator(s) will be charged with if/when he/she/they is/are caught. However, based on what seems evident so far, Hate Crime may not even be needed to make this a capital crime. After all, there was the theft of an automobile involved, and multiple means of killing used. So, it doesn't seem like these would be "heat of passion" or purely random "accidents".

Carlos Ponce

Name me a "crime" that didn't result from "hate" of one form or another. Employers hate my (fill in the blank) so I rob so I can live. People hate me or I hate my life so I take drugs. Why punish me just because you hate drugs? Society hates drug takers. The government hates my lifestyle of not paying taxes or bills so they put me in prison. I struck that person because he hated my (fill in the blank). Why should society hate me just because I want to love children physically? Rape is a hate crime, theft is a hate crime, pedophilia is a hate crime, murder is a hate crime, drug use is a hate crime, every crime is a "hate crime". Delayed justice just gives perps more than their 15 minutes of fame.

Lars Faltskog

Response to kevjlang posted at 12:56 pm on Wed, Mar 12, 2014:

It wouldn't surprise me in the least if the perpetrator(s) was/were angry, homophobic individuals. A likely scenario would be that the perpetrators propositioned the young women (or questioned them and their sexuality). The homophobes didn't like what they heard, and the two young women told them to jump in a lake, so to speak. The perpetrators probably got angry, then sought revenge in the form of deadly assault.

The likes of Quannel X will have to come to terms that violence has no racial "rhyme or reason" (this evidently is "black on black"), and I would imagine that Quannel has to revisit his faith stance/belief in regard to homosexuality. I believe his faith mindset still believes that homosexuality is "an abomination".

Lars Faltskog

Response to carlosrponce posted at 4:17 pm on Wed, Mar 12, 2014:

Sure, every crime has elements of "hate" contained in the act. However, in decades past, a preponderance of assaults, lynchings, deaths, etc were committed soley because of "hate" that even transcended the desire to kill for money, passion, settling bets. A "hate" crime (and perhaps we should review the legal term) is a crime committed simply because the perpetrator has a psychological disdain for the other person. The crime committed through "hate" would be inexplicable otherwise.

Most "hate" crimes (defined as such these days) are not because of crime of passion, settling scores, nor the desire to rob. "Hate" crimes go deeper.

Carlos Ponce

So, you would set set a scale for hate crimes. "On a scale from 1 to 10 where 1 is mild hate and 10 is extreme hate, how would you juror's rate this man's hate?" Sorry but Hate is Hate. You cannot look into a man's soul, you can only be fooled by lawyers.

Lars Faltskog

Well, carlosrponce -
Jurors all the time have to weigh the percentage of "fault", even on both sides, when considering certain cases such as car crashes that result in death, damage, and/or injury. You have to realize that the 1-10 scale is one of many methods used by the jury foreman/foreperson to guide the other jurors into making good decisions.

As kevin mentioned in his 8:34 post, the bottom line issue with "hate" crime is that the perpetrator(s) did it because they hated the victim. In this case, if the prosecutors can prove it was a "hate" crime, then that is where it will go. You and I can't change this relatively new law.

In reality, I think the prosecution will have no problem in entertaining the "hate crime" element. These 2 young women were hurting no one. There's no proof that $ was stolen from them. The perpetrators did not know them and they were lesbian individuals. Points to "hate crime".

Carlos Ponce

Add to that the fact that he dumped the bodies on Bolivar then fled the scene in a stolen vehicle. It looks pretty damning. I hope they catch him. The drawing looks pretty good. Wonder if they have any leads. But don't worry, his attorney will put some spin on it.

Kevin Lang

Under normal conditions, capital murder has to show that there was something in the distinct relationship between the accused and the victim. The fact that one person is dead is not enough to justify capital murder. The state has to show that I had a specific set of reasons why I killed you. I was robbing a bank and I killed you so I could get the money or escape. I wanted your car, but I didn't want you in it, and I didn't want you as a witness to what I look like or where I headed. You went out with the girl I had a crush on, and I needed to eliminate the competition and win her love.

For a Hate Crime, the sole reason reason I'm killing you has nothing to do with anything between us, nor me being in the act of commiting a felony. I hate your type of people. I need to cleanse the world of your type. Never saw you before in my life, but you represent that which I hate.

Now, I could argue that no one sane would harbor that belief. It's a completely irrational train of thought. I must be insane. I'll spend some time in mental health care, and perhaps be cured, and be let back into society, where I'd be free to conjure up some other obsene prejudice and kill again. I could also argue that a sane person isn't going to come to a premeditated decision to kill someone. However, if we follow those lines of reason, that all captital murder convictions should, instead, be insanity convictions, and therefore not punishable by the death penalty. There are definitely quite a few liberals that would buy into that line of reasoning. However, is that the way you want to see it?

The killers of James Byrd, Jr. attacked merely because James Byrd, Jr. was there and he was black. They had plenty of opportunity to avoid killing him, but their hatred of blacks made it convenient to maim him and kill him. They had no specific reason to hate Byrd. It was purely to have one less black man in the world. Without it being called a hate crime, I can certainly see these guys finding clever legal arguments that they were just loons that deserved care and feeding in a country club mental institution for the rest of their natural lives, courtesy of you and me.

No, I have no problem with animals like those guys sitting on death row because they choose to adopt an irrational hatred for a class of people and decide to single out one perceived member of that class as an example to the rest.

Having an irrational hatred for a class of people should not be a line of defense. I have no problem with it being a line of prosecution. I'm not going to say that it should be illegal for John King to be prejudiced toward blacks, nor that he he should be punished merely because he hates them. However, if he goes around killing people merely because he chooses to not control his prejudice and hatred, then I have no problem with him being convicted of capital murder because of it. There are plenty of people on death row due to their inability to control emotions much more instantaneous than that.

Carlos Ponce

Those who killed James Byrd Jr.:
Lawrence Russell Brewer was executed in the Huntsville Unit on September 21, 2011.
John William King as found guilty and sentenced to death for his role in Byrd's kidnapping and murder
Shawn Allen Berry The driver of the truck, Berry was the most difficult to convict of the three defendants because there was a lack of evidence to suggest that he was a racist. Berry claimed that Brewer and King were entirely responsible for the crime. Berry was spared the death penalty and was sentenced to life in prison.
All three were convicted prior to the passage of the James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Act. Would a "Hate Crimes Act" have made a difference in the outcome? Probably delayed the execution of Brewer but no real difference.

Kevin Lang

I think I misinterpreted the following statement:

"State law enforcement officials, along with Jasper's District Attorney, determined that since Brewer and King were well-known white supremacists, the murder was a hate crime."

Further research finds that Texas didn't pass a Hate Crime law until 2001. Their crime, while termed a hate crime, wasn't prosecuted as such. Fortunately, the jury saw through it as a heinous crime that deserved maximum punishment.

In any event, if someone is so blinded by prejudice against certain classes of human beings that he goes out and wantonly tries to rid humanity of people of that class, then I have no sympathy if their crime gets further enhanced because of that. A person's prejudice is not a license to open hunting season on whatever group of humans you're prejudiced against.

rah

I hope the law finds the guilty party and the dreebs pay for their crime.

Now, has Quanell X forgotten where he lives or is he looking for a new place to call home? I think he is more welcome in Houston,

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