Officer shoots suspected shoplifter at downtown Starbucks


The incident happened at Dallas and Main at about 9:20am. HPD Officer S. Gallagher, on duty and wearing street clothes, happened to be in the shop buying a beverage when employees reported to him that a man had just stolen some items.

Police say Officer Gallagher followed the man outside, identified himself as an officer and asked him to return the stolen items, but the suspect responded by taking a swing at the officer. As the man continued walking, Officer Gallagher repeated the command to return to the store. The alleged shoplifter grabbed a 4x4 from a construction site and swung the board at the officer. At that point, the officer shot the man.

The wounded suspect kept walking, reportedly grabbed a rope and swung once at again the officer. Officer Gallagher and a Harris County Sheriff's Office deputy who arrived to assist subdued the man.

The male suspect, in his 50s, was transported to Memorial Hermann Hospital with a gunshot wound to the arm. The officer was not injured.

Officer Gallagher, sworn in as an officer in January 2010, is assigned to the Burglary and Theft Division.

As is customary in HPD officer-involved shooting incidents in the city limits, this case is being investigated by the HPD Homicide and Internal Affairs Divisions, as well as the Harris County District Attorney's Office.

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