Friend recalls moment she turned in alleged ‘road rage’ killer

Khatelyn Krizstian remembers being woken up in the middle of the night by a phone call from her friend Erich Nowsch Jr., the suspect at the center of the Las Vegas “road rage” killing last February.

Krisztian, 23, told ABC News’ “20/20” in an exclusive interview that Nowsch called and said, “‘There’s something important. I have to talk to you. I need to talk to you now.'”

Krisztian said Nowsch, then 19, showed up at her apartment at 4 a.m. on Feb 13, 2015, confessing to shooting at someone in his neighborhood.

“And the first words out of his mouth [were], ‘I got them,'” Krisztian said.

What Nowsch told her next would change the lives of two families forever. Nowsch, 20, is accused of shooting and killing Tammy Meyers, a 44-year-old mother of four, in front of her Las Vegas home on Feb. 12, 2015.

Watch the full story on ABC News’ “20/20” TONIGHT at 10 p.m. ET.

That night, Tammy’s daughter Kristal Meyers told “20/20” she and her mother went out for a driving lesson around 10 p.m. They were on their way home when Kristal said they were side-swiped by a silver car and a man got out and threatened them. When they got home, her brother Brandon Meyers told “20/20” that he grabbed his gun and went back out with his mother to look for the unknown man, leaving Kristal at home. After driving around, Brandon said his mother spotted a silver car that she thought was the one who had hit her earlier. They followed the car and someone inside, who police believe was Nowsch, started shooting at them. Brandon said they fled back home, where police say Nowsch followed them and shot and allegedly killed Tammy Meyers in her drive way.

Nowsch, who lived a block away from the Meyers family, was charged with conspiracy to commit murder, murder with use of a deadly weapon, attempted murder with a deadly weapon and discharge of a firearm from or within a structure or vehicle, in the death of Tammy Meyers. A second suspect, Derrick Andrews, 26, who prosecutors allege drove Nowsch to the cul-de-sac where Tammy Meyers lived, also faces the same charges.

An aspiring rapper and alleged neighborhood drug dealer, Nowsch had previously told Krisztian that he had been receiving anonymous death threats for months from whom he thought were rival drug dealers.

“He said they would come through text messages, phone calls, Facebook messages. He didn’t know who they were, but that they were going to skin him, take care of his mom, burn the house down — insane things,” Krisztian said.”I could see the fear in his eye.”

So when Krisztian said Nowsch allegedly told her that he had got “them,” she said she thought he meant that he had confronted his alleged rivals.

“I [prayed] to God no one’s injured. I [prayed] this was what he thinks it was…that these kids were the ones coming after him. Never did I think that it would be somebody completely different,” said Krisztian.

Krisztian said Nowsch asked her to check the local news for stories on what happened, but she was unable to find any coverage that had the details Nowsch told her.

“It was unusual that we couldn’t find anything about the shooting. I was looking for ‘the teen shoots teen’ or a ‘drug deal gone bad’ or something like that,” Krisztian said.”Well, we couldn’t find that. It was, ‘Why can’t we find anything?'”

Days laters Krisztian said her then-boyfriend then showed her a local TV online news article detailing how a mother was gunned down in front of her house next to her green 1993 Buick.

Krisztian said she immediately realized Nowsch hadn’t shot at rival drug dealers, but he may have shot Meyers. Krisztian said she didn’t even finish reading the story and called police right away.

“I told them what had happened. I felt that this was more of, like, [a] moral obligation. Out of all the names in the world, Tammy was also my mom’s name, so I just feel like heaven puts people where they should be,” Krisztian said.”It was more of a moral responsibility rather than anything else.”

When Nowsch found out who he was suspected of killing, Krisztian said he told her he felt “nauseating remorse.”

“He could not understand how it happened. [He was] just as appalled as I was. How did it go from, ‘I was terrified, and these are some punk kids looking for me,’ to [taking] the life of a mother?” said Krisztian.

Nowsch’s defense attorney Conrad Claus said he believes this is a case of self-defense. He said Nowsch didn’t know he was shooting at Tammy Meyers and her son, he thought he was shooting at someone who had been sending him threats and tried to defend himself.

Both Nowsch and Andrews are in custody and awaiting trial. Nowsch’s trial is scheduled to begin next month.

Despite the allegations against him, Krisztian maintains that Nowsch is a good person.

“I just think he needs a little bit of guidance. He needs someone to help him. He doesn’t need to go away for the rest of his life,” said Krisztian.

Watch the full story on ABC News’ “20/20” TONIGHT at 10 p.m. ET.

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