HOUSTON – There were Houston officers wounded Tuesday, one critically, and a suspect was killed in the exchange of gunfire. The department locked down a neighborhood for hours as they hunted for a second suspect.
Police initially said they believed an armed and dangerous suspect was on the loose in southwest Houston, reported Fox26. By late Tuesday afternoon they said he was linked to burglaries in the area, but may not have taken part in the shooting.
The man who opened fire was killed in an exchange of gunshots with police.
Mayor Sylvester Turner told reporters that one officer is in critical condition after taking a bullet to the spine. Police Chief Art Acevedo urged people to “pray” for the wounded officers.
Police were responding to a residential burglary call when a homeowner said something suspicious was going on inside a backyard storage shed on Sterlingame Drive. As the officers approached, the gunman burst out and opened fire, Acevedo said.
Twenty-four year police veteran, Ronny Cortez, was in critical condition at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center. Ten-year veteran, Jose Munoz, was stable at Ben Taub Hospital with an injury to his foot that is not life threatening. Both officers are married.
— Houston Police (@houstonpolice) February 28, 2017
Houston police searched the neighborhood with police K9s looking for the second burglary suspect. Acevedo described the wanted individual as wearing dark clothes and a blue bandana. He also says three homes were burglarized and the suspect who was killed had been involved in at least one burglary. A $20,000 reward has been offered for information leading to the arrest of the outstanding suspect.
He urged people in the neighborhood to keep an eye out for the suspect, even as the police search concluded. “We need our community to be alert.”
At least three schools went on lockdown. Police did not immediately name the deceased suspect.