San Jacinto Pct. 1 Constable deputy killed while working security at PlazAmericas Mall in southwest Houston
HOUSTON - A law enforcement officer working an extra job was killed, and a suspect has died following a shooting at PlazAmericas Mall in southwest Houston Wednesday afternoon.
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During a press conference with Houston Police Chief Troy Finner, the officer was identified as Neil Adams, 62, with San Jacinto County Pct. 1, who was working security at the mall located in the 7500 block of Bellaire Boulevard.
The chief gave preliminary information saying a little before 4 p.m. there was an altercation with an unidentified suspect, 35, who was able to get ahold of Constable Deputy Adams' gun and shot him to death.
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Officers with the Houston Police Department arrived shortly afterward to assist and found the shooter at the food court. When they approached him, the suspect reportedly was carrying a knife and "came at the officers," Chief Finner said.
That's when the responding officers shot the suspect, however, officials say he got up and tried to flee, so they fired a taser at him. Based on a press release, "the suspect continued to resist and officers eventually were able to place him into custody."
Shortly afterward, the suspect was rushed to the hospital, where authorities say he later died.
Meanwhile, the officers, identified as T. Salameh and M. Nasser, who first shot the suspect are said to have two years with the HPD and have been placed on administrative leave, per protocol.
We're told Constable Deputy Adams worked with the San Jacinto Co. Pct. 1 since 2012 and was the environmental officer for the entire county. Constable Roy Rogers held back tears during his remarks calling Deputy Constable Adams a hero.
"He's a hero," he said. "And we want to honor him."
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Chief Finner also took a brief moment to offer condolences for the officer's loved ones left behind.
"I ask that everybody pray for this beautiful family," he said. "Pray for law enforcement profiles, cities, our counties, and our nation."
Amid an outpour of support from several other law enforcement officials, Constable Deputy Adams' wife, who was also at the press conference, shared heartbreaking testimony but also asked for support to other officers like her husband.
"My husband always said that you can either be a sheep or sheepdog. And I want everybody to pray for all the sheepdogs out there that are protecting everybody," she said. "They get a bad rap and they just want to protect that's what they want to do in their heart. And everybody's turned their back on them. And everybody should pray for all of them because they're here for you."
This story is developing and will be updated accordingly.