HPD: Man shot, killed after lunging at officer in northwest Houston
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- A man police say committed a string of robberies in the Heights was shot and killed by an off-duty Houston police officer in northwest Houston overnight.
It happened around 8pm on West Little York and Antoine.
According to police, the off-duty officer was contracted to work security at the strip center, after a string of armed robberies. Employees that work in the area say a Little Caesar's was the last to get hit by robbers.
For a while now, employees at the businesses in this strip center have been on alert.
"We keep our door locked, anybody that comes to the door, we just keep it locked so they can't get in without us getting up and opening the door," said worker Jackie Aguirre.
A series of armed robberies at three different businesses has folks wondering whose next.
"When I see you guys outside, I'm like, 'What happened now? Who got robbed, you know? We're very scared," said Aguirre.
Last night, the insecurities surrounding the property ended in gunfire. An off duty officer hired to work security here spotted a man who matched the description of the robbery suspects, who typically wore dark hooded sweatshirts.
"The officer asked him for identification, the suspect refused to provide an, said he didn't have any. And then he told the officer that, 'He was not going to jail,'" said HPD spokesperson Kese Smith.
According to police, the man tried to walk away, but the officer drew his weapon and ordered him to stop. The man got down on the ground, but when the officer holstered his weapon to handcuff him, they say the man jumped up, struggled with the officer and then took off running. The officer chased him, finally cornering him in the alley behind the strip center.
"(He) turns toward the officer, puts his hands again in his waistband, crouches down and charges the officer, telling the officer, 'I told you, I'm not going to jail,'" Smith said.
Police say the officer, fearing for his safety, fired one shot, hitting and killing the man.
Workers don't know if the man had anything to do with the robberies. The shooting they say, if anything, puts them a little more on edge.
"They say they've caught them and that they may be the same ones around the area, but we really don't know who they are," Aguirre said.
According to police, the officer who fired his weapon is an 11-year veteran of the force, currently assigned to narcotics. He'll be placed on administrative leave and events leading up to the shooting will be investigated.
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local, simon gutierrez
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