HPD officer shot, suspect killed during traffic stop in north Houston
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- We are learning more about the suspect who was killed after he allegedly wounded a Houston police officer on Houston's north side overnight.
The shooting unfolded just after midnight on Saddle Rock at Sweetwater. Officer Wes Fikes was transported to Memorial Hermann Hospital, where he is recovering. He was shot twice, once in the right forearm and once in the left bicep.
According to an HPD spokesperson, it happened after a two-man patrol unit spotted a car moving erratically. They attempted to stop the driver, identified as Jared Albert Alvarez, but he wouldn't pull over. Instead, he drove to the end of the cul-de-sac.
The officers blocked Alvarez with their patrol unit. Officer Fikes got out of the car and that's when the suspect opened fire. Officer Jimmy Dodson fired back. Alvarez, 32, died at the scene.
"I heard them gunshots go off twice and then all I hear is repeated shots," said Daniel Torres, a friend of Alvarez.
Torres says from down the street, he heard roughly a dozen gunshots total.
HPD Chief Charles McClelland met with Fikes and his wife. He describes Fikes as in good spirits. He has two young children, ages 5 and 7.
"He's very upbeat. He considers himself very, very fortunate. I met with him and his wife. They're very spiritual people. They certainly believe the Lord was watching over him," said Chief McClelland. "They're very fortunate he wasn't more seriously injured or killed."
We counted at least nine bullet holes in the side of Alvarez's Explorer. The back window was blown out as well.
"I feel like, why did he do that? He should've never done that. He was stupid," Torres said. "He should've just gotten his ticket. He just got home from TDC. He didn't want to go back. I feel him. He always said, 'I'm not gonna go back' and I said, 'All right, don't go back.'"
Alvarez's brother-in-law erected a cross where he died.
"Just to show him that we love him and we hope he's up there with God," said Johnny Toups.
Some neighbors don't believe the cross should stay.
"If somebody's crazy enough to shoot a cop, he's a bigger threat to the innocent people on the outside. I really don't care," said neighbor Ricky.
But Alvarez's relatives see it differently and say the father of two was trying to turn his life around.
"I wish that things could've been handled different on his part, because of my niece and nephew and the rest of the family," said a family member. "Jared is dearly loved by our family and he's gonna be greatly missed."
Officer Fikes will be kept at the hospital for the night. He has been with the Houston Police Department for two years. Chief McClelland says that before that, Fikes was a youth minister.
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