HOUSTON, TX – Nadia Atkins can rest a little easier now, knowing that the man suspected of murdering her husband is finally off the streets.
His apprehension will never bring Deputy Constable Kareem Atkins back, but at least they are one step closer to justice knowing that the shooter will not get away with his crimes.
“I mean, it’s two months later,” Nadia said at a press conference held earlier Monday.
“I think for a second there, we were a little worried. But this is a huge win for us. And we’re just so grateful for everybody up here for all the hard work that was put in, and that justice has begun.”
Houston Police Chief Troy Finner also addressed the media during the press conference thanking all of the agencies that participated in the effort to apprehend the suspect.
More importantly, Chief Finner issued a warning.
“I want to mention something that is significant to the law enforcement family. When someone seriously injures one of our officers or our deputies, or kills them, and I feel this way for everybody’s family, but I am talking about the law enforcement family, because…they are serving and protecting, we are going to come after you. You kill one of our officers, we will arrest you.”
Pointing to the fact that the suspect was arrested using Deputy Atkins handcuffs, Finner concluded his warning with this:
“I am not happy about it. We are hurting right now. The family is hurting. But you know what? That’s a move to justice. And that’s a message to everybody that’s out there. Hands off our deputies and our officers, and hands off of our citizens.”
The entire press conference can be seen below, courtesy of KHOU.
On October 16th, Atkins and fellow deputies Juqaim Barthen and Darryll Garrett were working an off-duty security job at a bar in Houston.
Responding to a report of a robbery outside the bar, Atkins and Garrett were in the process of making an arrest of an individual suspected of involvement in the robbery.
Detectives are still investigating the events of that fatal morning. There has been some speculation that the suspect shot the deputies as a means to intervene in the arrest they were making.
The incident occurred along the 4400 block of North Freeway at around 2:15 a.m.
Eddie Miller, 19, is believed to have opened fire, striking both Atkins and Garrett. Barthen, hearing the shots rushed outside where he was shot in the leg.
All three deputies were transported to Memorial Hermann at the Texas Medical Center.
Atkins died of his injuries. Barthen has since been released and is recovering at home. Garrett is still hospitalized in ICU and is still “touch and go,” according to Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman.
Miller has been charged with one count of capital murder of a police officer, one count of attempted capital murder of a police officer and one count of aggravated assault against a public servant.
He appeared before Judge Hilary Unger on Monday. His bond was set at $500,000 for the second and third charges. Bond was denied for the murder charge. It is not clear from the public records when he will next appear in court.
Should Deputy Garrett tragically succumb to his injuries, the attempted murder charge would be upgraded to a second capital murder of a police officer charge.
Our hopes and prayers are that he fully recovers.
To our readers in the law enforcement community, I would point to you the words of the Lt. Shannon Bowden, Harris County Sheriff’s Office Chaplain, who spoke at Deputy Atkins funeral service.
“It does not matter the evil that is around us. Those of us who wear the uniform, we will rise with the sun, and we will come home with the setting of the same. And we will defend the community that God has called us to defend, regardless of what is going on around us.”
For that, we are eternally grateful.
Multiple officers ambushed – one dead, another wounded during shootout with gunman
REX, GA – Multiple officers from the Clayton County Police Department responded to a report of a drive by shooting on November 30th in Rex, Georgia.
As multiple officers descended on the scene, the gunman opened fire on them, killing one officer and wounding another. The suspect was shot and killed during the exchange of gunfire.
The Atlanta Police Department extends its condolences to the Clayton County Police Department for the loss of their Field Training Officer, Henry Laxson, who was killed in the line of duty on Wednesday, December 1, 2021, after responding domestic violence incident. pic.twitter.com/vNwFQzHMMj
— Atlanta Police Department (@Atlanta_Police) December 2, 2021
Officers responded to the 3600 block of Jervis Court just before 9 pm on the 30th to the incident. While they were responding, officers were notified by another caller that a female had been shot and was laying in the front yard of a residence and not moving.
Additionally, another caller reported that a juvenile male had also been shot at a separate location.
As Clayton County Police officers responded in they were able to locate a female with an apparent gunshot wound first and attempted to render aid. Officers then turned their attention to a wounded juvenile male when they came under fire.
Officers at the scene were able to return fire and had a brief fire fight with the suspect. Clayton County Field Training Officer Henry Laxson was struck as well as Officer Alex Chandler. Officers who returned fire did strike the suspect, identified as Arthur Allen Gilliam, who died at the scene.
Officers Laxson and Chandler were evacuated from the scene and transported to a nearby hospital. Officer Laxson succumbed to his injuries while Chandler was treated for what was described as a non-life-threatening injury to his hand.
When the scene was secured, officers began their investigation and determined that the shooting stemmed from some type of domestic disturbance. They also located an additional woman who had been shot and killed, presumably by Gilliam prior to police arrival.
A wreath and balloons placed outside the Clayton County Police Department in remembrance of Officer Henry Laxson killed last night tending to a women who had been shot in a Clayton County neighborhood. @wsbradio#claytoncountypolice pic.twitter.com/2Ry5uD7fEO
— Sandra Parrish (@WSBParrish) December 1, 2021
Both women located died from their injuries while the child has been listed in critical but stable condition. Police, at this time, have not identified any of the victims in this case nor specified if the people who were killed were related to Gilliam in some manner.
Former Clayton County Police Officer Jim Lee worked with Laxson in the past and explained that he was the type of person who loved his job. Lee also spoke about the energy he had for working in the community and strived to be his best in all aspects of the job. He said:
“He [Laxson] never quit that energy. He was always positive. He achieved his dreams. He said he wanted to be on SWAT, so he did it. He made it. He wanted to do dive. He wanted to do everything and to know everything about the job.”
Lee went further to describe the loss that he and the community are feeling with Laxson’s death:
“It’s not just my loss. It is everybody’s loss. Everybody is suffering for this because you just lost a great person. You lost a great person who did a lot of positivity and died taking out a very bad person.”
A former schoolmate of Laxson, Allison Abel, noted that Laxson’s personality was welcoming and commented on how hard of a worker he was. She said:
“Henry was probably one of the sweetest guys I ever knew in high school. He always made me feel welcomed. He was smart, very smart, and he worked really hard in school.”
Republican Georgia Governor Brian Kemp posted a note on Twitter to express his condolences:
“Our thoughts and prayers are with his [Laxson] family, colleagues, and friends. Laxson is said to be one of Clayton’s finest and best officers.”
My heart is heavy with the news of another officer killed in the line of duty. I’m thinking of and praying for Field Training Officer Laxson, his family and the Clayton County community. https://t.co/IvuTfWzCEP
— Senator Reverend Raphael Warnock (@SenatorWarnock) December 1, 2021
Laxson’s death marks the third officer in the State of Georgia to lose their lives in the last month. Henry County Police Officer Paramhans Desai was shot and killed on November 5th while investigating a domestic dispute as well as Jackson County Deputy Lena Marshall who was shot in killed also on a domestic incident.
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The 27-year-old Alabama man has a lengthy history of arrests for drug charges. He also has a conviction for theft of property. Yet he somehow possessed a weapon inside a Birmingham nightclub, The Quest, which is open 24-hours a day .
Around 3 a.m., Birmingham police officer Darius Gamble was just arriving to start his off-duty shift working security. He was told by club staff that there was man inside with a gun. Officer Gamble made contact with Lee, and a physical altercation ensued.
During that struggle, Lee’s gun discharged striking himself in a “lower extremity” and Officer Gamble in the foot, according to Birmingham police.
Investigators have not yet indicated if the weapon was drawn or if the discharge was accidental. They have also not released details on how club staff knew he was armed.
After they were both wounded, Officer Gamble managed to subdue the suspect prior to other officers arriving on the scene. There is no indication that Gamble drew or discharged his weapon.
Gamble and Lee were both transported to the University of Alabama-Birmingham hospital, where they were both treated and released.
Officer Gamble is recovering at home, while Lee was transported to jail, where he was charged with second-degree assault, possession of marijuana and unlawful possession of a controlled substance. It is unclear if he will face any weapons charges in the matter.
He is currently being held in the Jefferson County Jail on $31,000 bond.
Sgt. Rodarius Mauldin spoke to the matter just a few hours after the shooting occurred.
In Alabama, it is legal for a person with a valid concealed carry permit from Alabama, or one of the states they share reciprocity with, to carry a weapon in a bar or nightclub.
The only caveat to the law is that businesses may post signs restricting weapons, and patrons must comply with those posted notices.
Law Enforcement Today has been in contact with the nightclub to determine whether they allow concealed carry. We have not yet received a response. We will update this article once we get an answer from The Quest.
It would be safe to assume that they do not allow it, given that they notified the officer of a gun on the premises.
The incident is being investigated as an officer involved shooting and is being investigated by state authorities, as is policy with all OIS incidents, with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency leading that effort.
Gamble, 28, has been with BPD since 2017, where he is assigned to the patrol division.
Meanwhile, Birmingham police continue their effort to get illegal guns off their streets.
The shooting of Officer Gamble comes just 6 months after 4 Birmingham officers were wounded by gunfire serving a search warrant.
Those officers breached a home of a murder suspect who immediately opened fire. Two officers were struck and two were grazed by rounds from the suspect’s gun. Officers on scene returned fire, killing the suspect.
Each of those officers were expected to make a full recovery.
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