HARRIS COUNTY, Texas - Those who loved Donovan O'Keif Carter came before Commissioners Court to unpack both their grief and their anger.
"Donavan was what our community needed. He was a bottle of sunshine on a rainy day. He was a bandage to a broken heart. To have his life taken as it was, was simply unbelievable," said Natasha Byrd, Carter's sister.
"To consistently see habitual criminals continuously get slaps on the wrist. This could have been prevented," said Brea McCoy, Carter's cousin.
Police say the 26-year-old Little League football coach and Prairie View A&M graduate was fatally ambushed a year ago by a habitual, violent offender who'd been released on multiple felony bonds.
"He done already had three or four felonies. He done had gun charges and all that and you have the audacity to let him go? Where was his ankle monitor? Where was that?" said Jacqueline Carter, Donovan's mother.
Jacqueline Carter remains furious at the reform judge who cut loose her son's killer - one of many on the Harris County bench still supported by Judge Lina Hidalgo and Democratic Commissioners in the majority
"They need to be accountable for what they do. Not just that murderer, the monster who killed my son. You talking about restitution? I'll be dead and gone. What about now? What about that $25,000 we spent on his funeral? And I'm still trying to pay for a headstone," said Carter.
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, who has come under heavy fire for her support of the permissive bond policy, offered Carter condolences.
"It really does break your heart. I'm so sorry for your loss and know we are doing everything we can to tackle crime in Harris County. We are doing everything we can," said Hidalgo.
To that end, Commissioners did approve $5 million in funding for a gun violence interruption program and the formation of so-called "holistic assistance responder teams" with the aim of de-escalating trouble before blood is shed.