Two people dead following fight near nightclub

July 11, 2011 8:35:00 AM PDT
Two people are dead following a fight in northwest Houston. One of those deaths came at the hands of an off-duty police officer. It happened near the El Chaparral Club, which is located in the parking lot of the Northwest Mall near West 18th Street.

Around 2:15am, when the club was letting out, two officers who were directing traffic noticed a fight at the gas station next to the club. They believe the men who were fighting came from the club.

The officers went over to try to break up the fight. At some point during the scuffle, police say one man got a knife from his car and stabbed another man.

According to investigators, Officer Charles E. Hightower, then yelled for the man to drop the knife. Police say he ignored the officer and that's when Hightower fired his weapon several times, striking the knife-wielding man.

"After the suspect was shot, he then gets up, runs to his vehicle and tries to flee, drives off and goes through some bushes and hits a couple of parked cars into the parking lot," said HPD spokesman Victor Senties. "He dies here at the scene."

There are about a dozen witnesses being held for questioning by police.

The stabbing victim was taken to Memorial Northwest Hospital, where he later died. Both deceased men have not have not been identified.

Officer Hightower is with the Northeast Patrol Division. He has served with HPD for four years. He was an off-duty officer, but was working an approved extra job. Hightower will be on desk duty for the next several days, which is standard protocol for HPD.

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