Officers attempting to apprehend a suspect were forced to open fire after he began behaving suspiciously outside a northeast Houston motel, officials said.
The incident happened shortly before 1 a.m. Wednesday in the parking lot of the Palace Inn at 15707 Eastex Freeway near Bender Road. Officers pulled in and said they saw the suspect, later identified as Jan-Michael Vincent, standing by his car.
"There was a very strong odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle," said Victor Senties, with the Houston Police Department. "They proceeded to give him verbal commands. At one point the suspect [got] inside the vehicle. He was repeatedly asked to identify himself and show his hands."
When Vincent refused to leave his car, investigators said they actually had to drag him out. They managed to pull him out once before he fought his way back inside. Seconds later, police said Officer Morelli was forced to open fire on Vincent.
"At one point, he started rummaging through the vehicle searching for something," Senties said. "Obviously the officers fear[ed] for their lives and believ[ed] the suspect was going for a weapon. Officer Morelli discharged his duty weapon at the suspect. He was struck."
Vincent was taken to the hospital in stable condition.
After he was transported, officers conducted a search and found drugs inside the Vincent's vehicle.