Jacqueline Gomez was already acting "different" shortly before she left Aldine ISD's prom Friday night, says close friend Justice Gonzalez. "She was stuttering, not talking clear. Her eyes were low, like she was dizzy." The next morning, her date found the 17-year-old dead in their Houston motel room. Seven hours later, "he was posting pictures of himself crying on Instagram," Gonzalez tells the Houston Chronicle. So she texted him to ask what happened to Gomez; Gonzalez let the newspaper see the messages. They read in part: "They [likely law enforcement officials] said she overdosed. I woke up. I tried waking her but she wouldn't. I was screaming and crying telling her to wake up. But she didn't. She didn't." The texts, interspersed with frowning and crying emoticons, add that Gomez was "perfectly fine and happy" when they left the prom and "happy" when they went to sleep, but that they drank alcohol—and Gomez also took hydrocodone.
"I shoulda took them away and flushed em," he texted, adding that he didn't know where she had gotten the painkiller or how many pills she had taken. But Gomez's friends and family insist she was no "party girl," and Gonzalez says she never saw her take drugs or talk about taking them. She adds that Gomez's date "was a couple of years older ... I remember telling her to be careful when she started to leave." Meanwhile, Gomez's mother tells KHOU her daughter was not supposed to go to the hotel after prom. Gomez's date's mom picked them up from the dance and asked Gomez's mom, via phone, if Gomez could spend the night at their house. "I said no, bring her back home," says Gomez's mom. But her daughter never arrived—and police say it was Gomez's date's mother who booked the hotel room for her son. The results of the autopsy are likely weeks out. (Read more overdose stories.)