Forest Hill, TX – The gunman who shot Forest Hill Police Officer Naquirra Williams and stole her patrol vehicle allegedly attempted to carjack a citizen at gunpoint just moments before his violent encounter with the officer, according to witnesses.
Telvin Fields said he was pumping gas at the 7-Eleven station in the 600-block of Forest Hill Drive at approximately 2:30 a.m. when a dark-colored SUV pulled up next to him, WFAA reported.
“A dude hopped out with a gun, and he immediately walked toward me and he was like, 'Let me get your car,'" Fields told the news outlet. "He cussed and he said, 'I’m not playing. I don’t want to have to kill you.'"
Fields instinctively darted back towards the store and managed to make it inside just before gunshots rang out.
"He just started letting off shots, boom—one shot,” 7-Eleven employee Thoal Lul said of the gunman. “The next thing you know, boom, boom, boom.”
Lul pulled out his cell phone and began recording the scene as he, Fields and another employee all verified that none of them had been hit.
The front doors of the store were shattered and had large holes in them, the video showed.
According to Fields and Lul, the shooter jumped back into his SUV and sped off, but was quickly intercepted by Officer Williams, WFAA reported.
The 24-year-old officer’s uncle, Derrick Mitchell, said that his niece was out on patrol when she spotted something suspicious in the area of the 7-Eleven store, according to KTVT.
“And as she circled around, the deceased approached her vehicle and started unloading on her,” Mitchell said. “She was able to get out of the car, return fire, and at some point, he commandeered the vehicle.”
The gunman led police on a 10-mile pursuit down Interstate 20 and onto Highway 287, KTVT reported.
He eventually crashed the cruiser at the Interstate 30 ramp in Fort Worth, WBAP reported.
A police attorney tweeted that the officers were firing at the gunman, who was subsequently found dead inside the stolen patrol vehicle, according to KTVT.
The cause of death has not been released.
Officer Williams was rushed to John Peter Smith Hospital by a fellow officer, Forest Hill Police Chief Dan Dennis told WFAA.
Although she suffered a gunshot wound to her arm, she successfully underwent surgery and is doing well, Mitchell told WFAA.
“She’s smiling,” the officer’s uncle said. “She’s going to make a recovery and thank God the family can breathe a sigh of relief.”
Officer Williams has been with the Forest Hill Police Department for just over a year, KTVT reported.
Her father is a retired New Jersey State trooper, Mitchell told the news outlet.
“She followed in his footsteps,” her uncle confirmed.
More than two dozen law enforcement officers waited at the hospital while the young officer was going through surgery, WFAA reported.
“They’re a tight-knit bunch,” Mitchell noted. “They stick together. And it does our family well to know that she is going to be okay and that the police department has her back.”
Mitchell said that the family is also thankful for the outpouring of support they have received from the community.
“Just to know that there is a conglomerate of folks that believe in the blue…That these folks are out here trying to protect us and keep us safe,” he told WFAA. “We’ve got an element out here that just doesn’t wanna do right, so I thank God for [law enforcement officers]. I thank God that my niece is going to be okay, and for all of the men and women that are out here to protect and serve us citizens. God bless all of you.”
Fort Worth police and the Tarrant County shooting team is assisting in the investigation, which is being handled by the Texas Rangers, WFAA reported.
“My prayers are with Forest Hill police officer Naquirra Williams, her family, and her loved ones as she recovers at John Peter Smith Hospital,” Texas Senator Beverly Powell tweeted on Wednesday morning.
The gunman’s identity has not been released.
“At least if nothing else, he won’t do what he’s done to anybody else,” Mitchell told WFAA. “We’re just happy that we’re not planning a funeral.”