Armed woman shot by deputies in her apartment after being mistaken for intruder in NE Harris Co.

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Sunday, February 4, 2024
Woman shot in apartment after Harris County Sheriff's Office deputies mistake her for intruder, officials say
Investigators later determined that the injured woman was a resident who broke into her own window with another woman because they didn't have the apartment key.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The Harris County Sheriff's Office says two of its deputies believed a woman was an intruder when they shot her inside her apartment Saturday morning in northeast Harris County.

The sheriff's office said the deputies were responding to a burglary call at the Pines of Woodforest Apartments on Uvalde Road at about 2:10 a.m., but didn't find an intruder.

Deputies were still on the scene when Robert Mitchell tells Eyewitness News he thought he heard another break-in at the apartment above him.

"I was sitting on my couch, and I just started hearing glass breaking," Mitchell said.

Mitchell said he called 911 and flagged down the deputies who had responded to the first burglary call.

When deputies went to investigate, the sheriff's office said they saw a broken window with raised blinds.

HCSO said its deputies announced their presence.

"I heard (the sheriff's office) knock on the door, nobody responded, and then maybe five seconds later I heard a gun," Mitchell said.

Deputies say they saw a woman with a gun walking toward the door and opened fire, hitting a 28-year-old woman who shares the apartment with her girlfriend.

The sheriff's office announced Saturday afternoon that one of the women had forgotten her keys and smashed the window herself.

Deputies later found a gun in the apartment, which they say looks like the one they say they saw the woman carrying.

In a cell phone video provided to Eyewitness News, you can see a woman being ordered downstairs after the shooting.

"I live here, please don't shoot," she yells.

Deputies ordered her onto her knees and handcuffed her.

The injured woman was taken to the hospital, and according to a neighbor, returned to the apartment later in the day.

"I absolutely wish I hadn't called, but at the same time, it's like I really didn't have a choice because I was thinking about not only my safety and my son, I was thinking about her safety and her son as well," Mitchell said.

Both deputies will be placed on leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation. The case is also being referred to a grand jury, which is standing in officer-involved shootings.

Per HCSO policy, the sheriff's office said body camera footage will be released within 45 days.

Anyone with information relevant to this critical incident is urged to contact the Harris County Sheriff's Office at 713-221-6000.

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