A community in North Carolina are mourning the death of a high school basketball coach and Spanish teacher who was killed in a gruesome shootout with a Mexican cartel.
Barney Harris, who worked at the Union Academy in Monroe, was shot dead while attempting to steal narcotics and money from the gang’s stash house, according to officials.
Leading a double life, Harris formed part of a rival criminal organization whose main purpose was robbing the Sinaloa New Generation Cartel.
On April 8, as part of a “team of people”, Harris sneaked into a trailer park to relieve a stash house used by the cartel of its prized possessions.
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Entering first, Harris allegedly captured Alonso Beltran Lara – a cartel member – who was consequently tied up then shot in the head twice in a gangland execution.
At one stage of the raid, another Cartel member entered the scene and an “old western shootout” gun battle broke out, according to Alamance County Sheriff Terry Johnson.
“What was found was over 30-some shell casings in the trailer and outside the trailer, and three other mobile homes, in that particular park, with bullet holes in them,” explained Johnson of his discoveries upon arrival at the site.
Cops also found Harris shot to death wearing a mask and bulletproof vest, which was unfortunately little help against the might of the cartel’s high-powered weapons.
Investigators subsequently discovered five firearms, $ 7,000 in cash and over a kilo of a substance believed to be cocaine, while there are also fears of an even more violent retaliation from the cartel.
“When we are dealing with the Mexican drug cartel, somebody is probably gonna die as a result of this,” Johnson explained.
“The Mexican cartels, they don’t forget. They’re gonna pay somebody back somewhere, and that concerns me.”
Meanwhile, the Monroe community is reeling from the loss of a dear “father, husband, teacher and coach”.
“My heart is broken, my heart is broken,” said Harris’ wife. “I’ve been with my husband 21 years.”
“He did everything God wanted him to, and God wanted him back home. My heart is pure with that. It’s broken, but it’s pure with that,” she added.
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“I’ve never seen my dad down, I’ve never seen my dad cry,” his son – one of three children – said while revealing that Harris lived by a motto of “All Love, No Fear.”
“My dad gave everything 100%.”
A parent from his school stated: “We absolutely love the family.”
“My husband went to college with Coach Harris. He coached my nephew. It’s been a difficult time, he will be greatly missed.”