Gunman kills popular Irving restaurant owner



Posted on September 1, 2009 at 12:21 PM

Updated Monday, Oct 19 at 5:51 PM

INTERACTIVE MAP: 1411 North Belt Line Road, Irving

Owner Slain

Cynthia Vega reports

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IRVING - Irving police say they still don't know who shot and killed longtime restaurant owner Alfredo Rosales Sr. Monday night, nor do they know why.

The murder is disturbing on many levels to patrons of El Comal Mexican Restaurant in the 1400 block of North Belt Line Road. Friends, customers and co-workers all told News 8 that they can't understand who would want to kill the 65-year-old restaurateur.

"We lost a big man; a great big heart; a gentleman who always tries to help his customers," said friend and loyal customer Jesus Cortez. "He doesn't have any enemies."

But a man dressed in black approached Rosales in the parking lot of his restaurant around 8:30 p.m. Monday and opened fire.

"A handgun was used in the offense, multiple shots were fired, and - as we know - our victim was transported to Parkland but died from the injuries," Irving police spokesman Officer David Tull said. "That individual left and fled the location in, I believe, it's a black, four-door smaller type vehicle."

Tull said detectives worked all night and all morning on the case.

"We're still trying to determine the exact motive on this situation," Tull said. "We're looking at several different angles and possibilities, and we're not ready to put an exact motive out yet."

Loyal customer Jesus Cortez said shooting victim Alfredo Rosales had no enemies.

Rosales lived in Dallas but clearly made his mark in Irving when he took over El Comal from previous owners about 10 years ago. He established a loyal clientele. Jesus Cortez said he and others met their spouses at the restaurant.

"We are all in shock about what's happened," he said. "We loved this place."

El Comal was closed as police continued their investigation.