HOUSTON - A 17-year-old suspect is dead after a car chase and an exchange of gunfire with the Harris County Sheriff's Office deputies, the department said.
The shooting was reported Wednesday in the area of Brightwood Drive and Stuebner Airline Road in northwest Houston.
Officials said the chase started around 4:50 p.m. after the suspect, who his father identifies as Jose Centeno, passed a school bus that had its lights on.
A deputy turned his lights on to pull the driver over, but deputies said he fled authorities. The slow-speed chase lasted for approximately 10 minutes through residential neighborhoods before the suspect turned back onto Stuebner Airline Road, made a U-turn and turned into a ditch, deputies said. Authorities didn’t specify which neighborhood the chase happened in.
Deputies said they ordered Centeno to show his hands.
Centeno had his driver's side window rolled down, reached for a handgun and fired "multiple rounds" at deputies, officials said. A total of five deputies returned fire, ultimately striking Centeno, they said.
"I thought it was fireworks. I was like, 'Oh, it's Halloween they're out there popping fireworks,' but then the sirens got louder and louder,” said Courtney Hill, who lives across the street from where the shooting happened. "We came back out. We see all these police cars, their guns are drawn at a White Lexus vehicle. No one is moving in the car."
Deputies later determined the gun was a 1911 replica carbon dioxide canister-powered BB/pellet air gun.
Centeno remained in his car while shooting at deputies and officials said they believe he died in the car.
Klein Independent School District confirmed in a statement to KPRC2 that Centeno was a student at Klein Oak High School, saying, "We express our sincere condolences to his family. Counselors and the administrative team are available for any students and staff who need assistance."
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