A longtime Houston police officer was shot and killed at an apartment complex on Tuesday. The 41-year veteran was preparing to retire this year.
Sgt. Harold Preston, 65, was responding to a domestic disturbance call at south Houston apartment building with two other officers when the shooting occurred, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said in a news conference.
“It’s a big loss,” Acevedo told reporters. “A lot of tears are being shed.”
On Tuesday morning, a woman called authorities because she wanted to retrieve items from her former residents, but her estranged husband, Elmer Manzano, 51, would not allow her in, Acevedo stated.
When they arrived at the scene, police spoke with the woman in the parking lot for nearly an hour, until her ex’s teenage song unlocked the door and opened it. It was then that the 14-year-old boy saw that his father had a gun and alerted the officers.
Moments later, Manzano fired multiple shots, striking Preston several times, once in the head, shoulder area, and a bullet to his spine.
Courtney Waller, the second officer, and the teenage boy were left wounded, and expected to survive.
All three individuals were taken to local hospitals. There, Preston was surrounded by family and loved ones after succumbing to his injuries.
“I’m not calling him a hero because of the way he died today, but he is a hero,” Acevedo said. “Because as good as he was as a cop, he was a better human being.”
Later that day, the suspect surrendered to police after a SWAT team and K-9 units arrived at the apartment complex. He had sustained a gunshot wound to his abdomen and was taken to the hospital to be treated; officials say.
Manzano is expected to face murder charges.
Breaking: Sgt. Harold Preston, 41-year-veteran of @HoustonPolice, shot & killed today during SWAT scene. #RIP #abc13 https://t.co/tlUZ7SFMpp pic.twitter.com/pw3xP84mQP
— Miya Shay (@ABC13Miya) October 20, 2020