Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Abilene, TX: Abilene man shot and killed by 2 Abilene police officers

A 49-year-old man who police say broke into his estranged wife's north Abilene home and threatened to kill himself and injure police was shot and killed by two officers after he pointed a loaded gun at them early Wednesday, Police Chief Stan Standridge said.

Miguel Martinez of Abilene was shot multiple times outside a home in the 1400 block of North 17th Street, steps away from Martinez's wife's home.

Standridge said at a news conference he didn't know how many times Martinez had been shot, nor where he was wounded. He didn't release the names of the officers involved.

The officers have been placed on administrative leave while Texas Rangers investigate, Standridge said.

According to police, Martinez's wife called 911 at 5:22 a.m. Wednesday after she awoke to find her husband in her bedroom, armed with a revolver. Martinez entered through a window after removing an air conditioner, police said.

"There was a struggle over the gun; he eventually left the residence," Standridge said. "He made comments (to his wife) he was possibly going to injure himself and possibly injure officers."

When the officers arrived, he was in the backyard with a gun, Standridge said. He pointed the gun at the officers, and the officers opened fire.

After he was shot, Martinez was taken to an Abilene hospital, where he later died of his injuries, Standridge said.

Police Sgt. Lynn Beard said Martinez has a "minor history" with police. Jail records show Martinez has been booked 16 times at the Taylor County Jail since 1984 for various misdemeanor criminal offenses, including one driving while intoxicated arrest and at least five public intoxication arrests.

APD records show officers were dispatched July 23 to Martinez's wife's residence; his wife said Martinez was intoxicated and was trying to steal his father's vehicle. Martinez was outside, trying to get into a black sport utility vehicle, but didn't have keys, police said.

Records show that an officer escorted Martinez home, advised him to go to sleep and stop causing problems.

Standridge declined to say whether Martinez was believed to be intoxicated when he was shot Wednesday. Toxicology test results are pending and Martinez's body has been sent to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner's Office for an autopsy, he said.

Martinez moved out of the house a few weeks ago because of rising tensions in the home, Standridge said.

"At this point, it appears that the officers acted with necessary and reasonable force," he said. "This will have a lasting traumatic impact on the officers, every officer who has been involved in an officer-involved shooting will tell you that. This will have a lasting impact on this police department. ... My condolences are with everyone."

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