HOUSTON – The ballistic vest of a Houston police officer who was killed Saturday evening was not penetrated by a bullet, Houston police Chief Art Acevedo said Wednesday.
In a written statement posted on Twitter, Acevedo said a careful examination of the vest worn by 32-year-old Sgt. Christopher Brewster when he confronted a domestic violence suspect in east Houston was hit on the edge by a bullet “which did not actually penetrate the vest.”
“Moreover, it was determined that other damage to the vest was not a penetration and at least one round was a strike below the vest (between the belt and the bottom of the vest),” Acevedo said in the statement. “Again, the vest performed as expected and there was no vest failure.”
On Monday, Acevedo issued a statement that said at least one of the bullets fired at Brewster “potentially penetrated” the vest. The next day, the chief and the Houston Police Officers’ Union told officers to begin wearing a second vest on top of their existing vest until testing was complete.
The chief said Tuesday the tests revealed the vests are safe.
“We are relieved to have established that the concerns regarding a vest penetration have been addressed,” Acevedo said. “Your safety is our paramount concern; therefore, it was necessary to keep you informed along the way. As always we encourage officers to wear your Level III protection only as a supplement to your Level II soft-body armor.”
Investigators said Brewster was confronting 25-year-old Arturo Solis about an earlier domestic violence incident when Solis shot him several times. Brewster died at a hospital.
Brewster’s funeral is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Tuesday.