Four people are dead after an armed Texas man set fire to several homes and ambushed residents as they ran outside to escape the flames, according to Houston police.
The Houston Fire Department responded to a call around 1:07 a.m. Aug. 28, from an address on the 8000 block of Dunlap Street, on the city’s southwest side, police Chief Troy Finner said at a press briefing. But as soon as they arrived, gunshots rang out, forcing firefighters to run for cover.
In a parking lot across the street, a 40-year-old man dressed in all black laid in wait with a shotgun, Finner said. As residents poured out of the multiple unit building, he opened fire on them.
A Houston police officer showed up to the scene shortly after the shooting began, and they spotted the suspect firing from the parking lot, according to Finner. The officer shot the suspect, killing him.
Three others were killed, including two men in their 60s and another man in his 40s, according to police.
With the shooter taken down, firefighters were able to respond to the blaze, Finner said, and at least two people were pulled from the burning building.
An investigation is underway but Finner said the suspect had recently been evicted from the building and that may have motivated the attack.
The officer who killed the suspect has been placed on administrative leave, Finner said, adding that he’s “very proud” of the 7-year-veteran, whose actions may have prevented a greater death toll.
“I’ve seen things that I haven’t seen before in 32 years, and it’s happening time and time again,” Finner said.