A Houston police sergeant was nearly assassinated early Saturday morning when a man, wanted for other serious crimes, attacked the police officer in an “ambush-style attack.”
Houston Police Department Chief Troy Finner said the sergeant, identified as 17-year-veteran Mauricio Valle, and two other officers were canvassing an area in southwest Houston for a man suspected of committing multiple burglaries, an aggravated assault, and possibly an aggravated robbery.
At some point during the search, Sgt. Valle parked his car near a strip mall,
according to KHOU-TV
. That’s when the suspect approached Valle’s vehicle from the passenger side and opened fire, hitting the officer multiple times. But the attack failed to accomplish its goal.
Instead, Sgt. Valle returned fire, striking the suspect several times. In the end, it was the suspect who lay dead on the ground.
“Officers who responded and rendered aid put tourniquets on our sergeant, and each and every one of them in my conversations with them was talking about how calm and professional and what a stud our sergeant is,” Finner
said at a press conference
. “Just really calm after being shot, giving out commands about where the suspect is.”
Despite his injuries, Sgt. Valle is expected to make a full recovery. Finner said the officer’s ballistic vest, which was hit, saved Valle’s life.
“[He’s] one of our top notch guys. Thank God he’s going to be OK. [He] sustained multiple shots to his arms and legs, and his ballistic vest took on one shot. But, he’s in with the best doctors in the world, and they’re taking care of him,” the chief said.
Police did not release the name of the assailant, but they did say he was a Hispanic man in his early 20s. Police also arrested a woman who was with the man but did not say if she was charged with any crimes.
Houston police officer shot several times in ambush; suspect dies after shootout with police
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