HPOU: Narcotics officer relieved of duty during investigation into shooting case

The Houston Police Officers' Union says a narcotics officer has been relieved of duty while a thorough investigation continues into the shooting on Harding Street on January 28 that left five officers injured and two suspects dead.

The union says the department relieved the officer of duty due to questions that cannot be answered until the case agent, who was injured in the shooting, is interviewed.

The Houston Police Officer's Union released this statement:

"Rumors continue to spread around the shooting last month on Harding Street where 5 police officers were injured and 2 suspects died. To be clear, officers were not on the wrong street and entry at that location was not made at random. We would refer you to the call slip from that location on January 8th, over 2 weeks prior to the shooting. We have confirmed that at least one narcotics officer has been relieved of duty due to ongoing questions that cannot be answered until the case agent is interviewed. The department made the decision to relieved the officer of duty while a thorough investigation continues. Nearly all officers relieved of duty return to work quickly after an investigation is complete. Rumors will undoubtedly continue until the case agent is able to be interviewed. Unfortunately, his gunshot wound has resulted in him being incapacitated while the surgeries continue. Any assumptions or conclusions made prior to the interview taking place, are just assumptions."


In a statement, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said the department is conducting a thorough investigation and urges everyone to let the investigation take its proper course:

“When an officer involved shooting (OIS) occurs at HPD, we consider it a legal and moral obligation to conduct a thorough and impartial investigation into the circumstances leading up to and resulting in the OIS.

There is a lot of speculation as to the circumstances regarding this OIS at 7815 Harding Street, but we urge everyone to let the investigation take its proper course and proceed to conclusion.

As I said last Thursday to our community, we will leave no stone unturned to determine the good, the bad and the ugly.  We owe this to the officers involved and their families, the deceased suspects’ families, and the community we serve.  The department is working closely with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office in our pursuit of the facts.

I know that in addition to the OIS itself, many have questions regarding the circumstances surrounding the search warrant.  All of these questions are part of our ongoing criminal and administrative investigations.  Rather than releasing piecemeal information, consistent with our commitment to transparency, we will report our findings at the conclusion of our investigations.”

Five undercover narcotics officers were attempting to serve a search warrant on Harding Street near Berkley Street on January 28 when the shooting occurred. Three officers have been released from the hospital and two remain hospitalized.