Texas state trooper shoots neighbour through front door

The men live one floor apart in units that share the same last two numbers

Graig Graziosi
Wednesday 27 September 2023 18:03 BST
Off-duty DPS trooper fires shots at neighbor

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Louise Thomas

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An off-duty state police officer in Houston shot a neighbour through a closed door when he mistook the man for an intruder, police said.

The incident occurred on Monday just steps away from the Houston Astros' Minute Maid Park. Gunshots rang out shortly after midnight, ending with a bullet lodged in the shoulder of a 35-year-old man.

The state trooper who shot the man thought "someone was trying to break into his apartment," so he "discharged his weapon one time," according to Assistant Houston Police Chief Yasar Bashir.

"We don't know why he was at that apartment, but the initial assessment is that trooper believed he was trying to break in," the chief said, noting that both of the men lived in the same building.

The men live one floor apart in units that share the same last two numbers, according to ABC13.

A spokesperson for Finger Companies, which owns the apartments, said they believe the resident who was shot mistook the trooper's apartment for his own.

The trooper said during the press conference that have gave the man several verbal warnings to "get away" before he shot him through the door. The wounded man then reportedly ran down the hallway until police caught up with him on his own floor.

The neighbour, who was only identified as a Black man in his mid-30s, is expected to live.

The state policeman was not injured in the shooting.

Neighbours speaking to local media outlets had a mixture of reactions, with some questioning the judgement of the trooper who fired blindly through the door, while others understood the fear that might come with believing someone was trying to break into their home.

"I don’t know how I feel about [the shooting]. I guess I would want to know who was outside and what was going on. Maybe he felt threatened, right," one neighbour told Fox26 Houston.

Another neighbour spoke to ABC13 and questioned why the interaction ended with a shooting, "especially from a cop who is supposed to protect you."

No charges have been filed as of yet. However, a grand jury is expected to determine whether the trooper should be indicted in the wake of the shooting, according to ABC13.

The Harris County District Attorney's Office said it intended to present the case like any other.

The Houston Police Department and the Texas Rangers are investigating the incident.

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