Normally, police officers get to put up their feet and relax after a long shift at an extremely stressful job. For one off-duty deputy in Houston, Texas, the action was just getting started when she returned home. The off-duty reserve Harris County Precinct 7 deputy constable, whose name has been withheld, shot and killed a man as he tried to force his way into her home Thursday night.
It all started with a simple argument, according to a Houston Police statement. Elsewhere in the apartment complex, 22-year-old Corey Hayes was having an argument with his mother and his grandmother. Both of the women were familiar with the deputy who lived nearby, so they fled to the deputy’s apartment for safety. That didn’t stop the young man – he kicked down the door to the deputy’s home and confronted the women.
The deputy, the mother, and the grandmother all warned Hayes that the homeowner was an off-duty deputy. And if things weren’t already tense enough, the deputy’s young son was also present in the apartment. The deputy continued to give verbal warnings for him to stop, but Hayes ignored them and charged at her, forcing her to open fire. The suspect was rushed to the hospital but was pronounced dead on arrival.
It’s unfortunate that Hayes forced the officer to open fire, especially with Hayes’ mother and grandmother there to witness the event. It wasn’t like this was some random thug who decided to break in and steal a fistful of cash.
This was an emotionally disturbed young man who was in the middle of an argument and made some bad decisions in the heat of the moment. Family members told the Houston Chronicle, that “[Hayes] grew up a good kid,” and that “he wasn’t a gang banger and didn’t have a criminal record.”
It will be interesting to see how this story develops over the next few days between the family members of Hayes and the deputy. On the one hand, the deputy potentially saved the women from harm and she acted the way that you would expect anyone to act, especially with her young son present. On the other hand, though, she did shoot their son and grandson in front of the two women’s eyes. Will they stand by the deputy and agree that it was a textbook (but sad) case of self-defense?
Only time will tell. Meanwhile, the deputy, who is a five-year veteran, has been placed on temporary administrative leave, as is standard operating procedure for these types of incidents.
This just goes to show the importance of respecting other peoples’ property. Listen, folks, if you break into somebody else’s home and they identify themselves as a cop or a gun owner, then that might be an excellent time to kiss the ground.