Gunman dies after holding 2 Westchase apartment workers hostage and kills 1 of them, HPD says

Police said the investigation got underway at the Westchase Forest apartments on Richmond Avenue and Breezewood Drive.

Jessica Willey Image
Tuesday, February 13, 2024
Houston murder-suicide: Suspect shoots 2 Westchase Forest apartment complex employees shot, killing a woman, HPD says
Houston police said the suspect is also dead from an apparent self-inflicting gunshot after the incident inside a leasing office on Monday.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- A gunman shot two Westchase-area apartment complex employees inside a leasing office, killing one of them, before turning the weapon on himself, the Houston Police Department said on Monday afternoon.

According to HPD, officers received a call about a shooting in progress at 2:35 p.m. at the Westchase Forest apartment complex at 11355 Richmond Ave., off Breezewood Drive.

In a post to X, formerly known as Twitter, police said their HPD commanders, homicide detectives, and public information officer are headed to the scene for a possible murder-suicide shooting. Police then found two people dead inside the leasing office.

Executive Assistant Chief Ben Tien told ABC13 at the scene that the shooter, a man in his mid-30s to 40s, entered the office, kicked everyone else out, and held a man and a woman hostage.

The gunman opened fire, killing the woman and wounding the other victim, Tien said. Then, police believe the suspect shot himself.

Tien credited a nearby Houston Fire Department station with rushing the surviving victim to the hospital, where he's stable.

Police believe the shooter was targeting the two people. Four others were inside the leasing office when he walked in.

"All of that happened so fast. I was just trying to get my son out of there so quick," Cristian Velasquez, who was waiting with his wife and 4-month-old son to see an apartment, said. "I'm very thankful. We made it out of there safe."

HPD could not specify the relationship between the suspect and the victims, but Tien said that will be part of the investigation.

The victims' names have not been released.

The shooting reportedly occurred in an area that the ABC13 Neighborhood Safety Tracker counted three homicides in the last 12 months. That count was down by 75% from 2021's total, when 12 homicides were reported. The area is home to about 26,000 people.

If you are struggling with thoughts of suicide or worried about a friend or loved one, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 988, or text TALK to 741-741 for free, confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

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