LEAGUE CITY, Texas – A woman was killed and her husband who shot her took his own life in a four-hour standoff on League City’s west side Wednesday night, according to League City police.
The woman, identified as 35-year-old Erica Rene Allen, was a principal at Heights Elementary School in Texas City, Texas City Independent School District officials said Thursday. Allen’s husband, 40-year-old Nicholas Allen, was later confirmed to have been an assistant principal at Wells Middle School in Spring Independent School District, according to the district.
Two children, who were inside the home at the time of the shooting, are safe after being brought out by a tactical unit, police said.
Investigators said police were called to the couple’s home just after 10 p.m. in the 400 block of Westwood Drive. The initial report was that there was a home invasion and that a woman had been shot and a man was holding children hostage inside, police said.
Police said when they arrived at the scene, they found Erica Allen shot dead and facedown in a neighbor’s yard.
“We had BBQ’s with them, we would drink beer together, we had fires in the fire pit, totally blown away,” said neighbor Brandon Schilter
When no one inside responded to police, investigators said a combined area response tactical (CART) team was called to the scene.
After several hours, investigators said members of the CART team breached the home and rescued the two children. A 2-year-old child was in a crib and a 7-year-old boy was in a bedroom, police said. Officers said both children were carried out to an ambulance by members of the CART team.
Police said they searched the house and eventually found Nicholas Allen dead with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Detective John Griffith, the public affairs officer for the League City Police Department, said police believe the incident was a domestic murder-suicide and not a home invasion by a third party.
Stacey Camp lives nearby and was out for a walk. She didn’t realize what had happened until early Thursday morning.
“It’s kind of alarming, it’s kind of surprising because it’s a really quiet neighborhood,” Camp said.
Investigators said there were four large U-Haul storage boxes located in the driveway of the house. It was unclear if those boxes were for moving in or out of the house.
Court documents revealed that Erica Allen petitioned for a divorce and filed for a temporary restraining order against Allen on the same day in July 2020.
Texas City ISD Superintendent Melissa Duarte, Ed.D. released the following statement:
“It is with great sadness that I am reaching out to inform you that our principal, Erica Allen, was killed tragically Wednesday night. Mrs. Allen will be deeply missed and our thoughts are with her family and friends as they grieve this heartbreaking loss.
Our plan is to not make the announcement of Mrs. Allen’s death at school. We want you as parents to be able to do that. We encourage you to be especially sensitive and prepared to offer support to your child during this time. Unexpected deaths like this impact children in different ways.
Over the next few days, encourage your child to express his/her feelings and listen attentively. Counselors will be available to students and staff, and additional grief counselors will be on hand to support our students and staff through the remaining days of school. Former Heights principal and current central office administrator Nathan Jackson will be at the Heights campus until the end of the school year to provide support and leadership.
If you are concerned about your child or any child in our school community, please reach out to the school counselor by calling 409-916-0500.
Our school community is built on caring relationships. Please know that my top priority has and continues to be the care and support of every student. It’s important that we help support each other in the coming days. Please keep Mrs. Allen’s family and friends in your thoughts.”
Spring ISD released the following statement:
Our entire Spring ISD community is devastated and shocked to hear about the passing of Nicholas Allen, who had served as an assistant principal at Wells Middle School since joining the district in July 2020. Our thoughts are with the couple’s children and extended family as they face overwhelming grief and sorrow in the days ahead.