Gunman killed 2 people at random before officer-involved shooting at NW Houston motel, HPD says

ByMycah Hatfield and Courtney Carpenter KTRK logo
Tuesday, July 20, 2021
HPD asking why man randomly killed 2 before shooting at officers
The suspect died when he exchanged shots with police at a northwest Houston motel, but it's not certain if HPD's gunfire killed him.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- In northwest Houston, three people are dead, including a gunman, after police say he opened fire at a motel.

The shooting happened at the Palace Inn on Antoine near 34th Street.

Houston police say a call came in just after 11 p.m. Sunday. They believe it was the gunman who called in, saying he had weapons and was planning to hurt people then fire at officers.

Before officers arrived at the motel, police say the man had already shot and killed two people - a man and a woman who they don't believe had any connection to the shooter.

Investigators believe the man and woman were killed two to three minutes after the original call came in.

Police say as soon as the officers arrived, before they even exited their patrol cars, they started getting shot at by the suspect, who was up on the second floor balcony.

Three officers returned fire on the suspect, Executive Assistant Chief Matt Slinkard said. None of the officers were shot.

Police say the suspect also randomly shot over the balcony, hitting two other people below. Both victims were treated for their injuries and are expected to survive.

At some point, officers saw the suspect go down in the open doorway of what appeared to be his room at the motel. That's when the officers made their way to the second floor in an attempt to render aid to potential surviving victims.

The suspect was shot and killed. HPD said investigators are still working to determine if he was shot by officers or if he died by suicide.

"Again, we don't know the motives of the suspect. We don't know if the suspect was in a mental health crisis, all that will be part of our investigation," Slinkard said. "But you know, officers can find themselves in a very dangerous and volatile situation. Sometimes in just a matter of seconds, and that's what happened."

Investigators are reviewing surveillance video at the motel.