By Nelson Oliveira New York Daily News
FORT WORTH, Texas — Police in Texas avoided a potential tragedy Thursday after killing a man who held a child as a shield during a hostage situation, authorities said.
The drama began shortly before noon when a woman called 911 telling police in a whispering voice that there was an armed man inside a Fort Worth home, Police Chief Ed Kraus said in a brief news conference Thursday afternoon. The caller said at least three other people, including children, were inside.
Officers then rushed to the scene with heavy weapons, body armor and shields, according the chief. But Kraus said the cops were immediately met with gunshots as the suspect held a kid in front of him.
At least one bullet struck an officer’s shield.
Gunman is shot and killed after holding four people hostage during a standoff in Fort Worth. At one point, he even used a child as a shield against officers. @fortworthpd @FOX4 @GoodDayFox4 pic.twitter.com/056460WBe5
— Ashley Paredez (@AshleyOnFox4) July 19, 2019
“Because the suspect was using the child as a shield, officers could not return fire at that time and they backed away,” Kraus said.
The department’s SWAT officers were called and police evacuated numerous neighbors in the area. When the team arrived, the man continued to fire at the police from the third-floor apartment window, the chief said.
The SWAT officers went up to the apartment because of the threat the man posed to the hostages and forced themselves inside, where they saw the suspect holding his weapon near the children, according to police.
Kraus said a SWAT officer fired at least one shot at the man, who was taken to the hospital and pronounced dead.
Police did not immediately name the suspect, but the chief said he was “an African American young man.”
None of the hostages was injured and it was not clear how many of them were children.
A motive was still unknown Thursday afternoon.
©2019 New York Daily News