Tyler man arrested for murder hours after shooting of Chapel Hill senior

Crime

TYLER, Texas (KETK) – A Tyler man is behind bars on a murder charge just hours after a Chapel Hill senior was shot to death in his own driveway.

According to judicial records, John Edward Sparks Jr., 18, was booked Thursday into the Smith County Jail hours after 17-year-old Zane Collier died from his injuries.

17-year-old Zane Collier (Photo provided by Collier Family)

Collier lived in the 4800 block of Holiday Hills Road just north of Tyler and was a senior at Chapel Hill High School. Family members that KETK News spoke to said that a friend had come over to hang out with Collier.

His sister says she went inside because the friend was “acting weird.” Moments later, shots rang out and Collier was found laying on the driveway. He was taken to UT Health Tyler where he later died.

Sparks has no prior criminal record and records indicate this is his first arrest.

He is currently sitting in the Smith County Jail on a $1 million bond.

Chapel Hill ISD issued the following statement following Collier’s death.

We were deeply saddened this morning to hear the news of the passing of one of our students. Mr. Zane Collier was a senior at Chapel Hill High school, set to turn 18 next month. As a father, this is simply unimaginable and my heart goes out to Zane’s family.

When our school community experiences a tragedy, such as the loss of a young life, it impacts us all. This is difficult and challenging to process, and we realize that a tragic event such as this can generate high levels of anxiety and distress in students. The District’s crisis team has responded and will be helping to support students and staff as they process their grief. This support will continue as long as necessary.

Our condolences, our thoughts, and our prayers go out to the Collier family and all of Zane’s friends. I know that our entire community joins me in expressing condolences.

LAMOND DEAN, CHAPEL HILL ISD SUPERINTENDENT

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