What began as a family disturbance, ended with multiple area police departments involved in the shooting and arrest of 30-year-old suspect Eddie Tamez.
At approximately 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 21, the San Patricio County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Sinton Police Department after an officer witnessed a disturbance between Tamez and his wife and daughter. The officer also noted Tamez was armed with a gun.
When confronted by police, Tamez fled into the residence and threatened the officers, at which point the officers retreated to a safer distance. Moments later, Tamez and his teenage daughter climbed into his SUV and attempted to run over the deputy blocking the road.
Officers chased the SUV as it fled on US Highway 181 into Taft, where the Taft Police Department attempted to stop the suspect’s vehicle. While the case did not reach excessive speeds, Tamez would not stop. While deputies were successful in spiking his tires, Tamez refused to stop and continued driving to Gregory on the rim of a deflated tire.
After successfully eluding another attempt at apprehending him, this time in Gregory, Tamez drove through the yard of an apartment complex, when an officer was able to block his exit.
Tamez fired through his windshield at a deputy attempting to back his vehicle away from the suspect. The bullet went through the deputy’s windshield and grazed his hat. The deputy returned fire as his vehicle continued to back up, eventually dangling vertically while caught in a guide wire.
Tamez’ daughter jumped out of the car, and another deputy was able to pull her to safety.
Tamez then fled on foot to the old Gregory Fire Station and opened fire at officers from Gregory, Sinton, Taft, and a county constable, using approximately six different guns, prompting the officers to return fire. Tamez was hit multiple times, and was transported to an area hospital, where he later refused treatment.
Miraculously, none of the officers involved in the shooting were injured.
“We’re blessed that we had everybody go back to their home that night,” San Patricio Sheriff Oscar Rivera said, “except for the guy who ran.”
According to Rivera, an area of concern that became apparent during the incident were the multiple bystanders filming the shooting and posting it live on social media, instead of taking cover.
“These people are out there with their cameras, with no care in the world except to get a glory shot, and they could get hit,” Rivera said, who asked the public to please take cover and protect themselves in future incidents in the county.
Tamez is currently in custody at the San Patricio Sheriff’s Office, and is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon against a public servant. His bail is set at $100,000.
More charges are expected from the other law enforcement agencies involved.