Two Austin police officers shot, 1 killed, near Westgate Blvd.

By | November 11, 2023


An Austin police officer died after a shooting in south Austin Saturday morning, two top city leaders confirm, marking the first time in a decade that an Austin police officer has been killed in a shooting in the exercise of its functions.

A second police officer was also shot and taken to Dell Seton Medical Center.

Two deceased people were found in the home, Mayor Kirk Watson said in a memo to Austin City Council members Saturday morning. The suspect was shot and died at the scene.

The shooting happened around 4:30 a.m. in the 9300 block of Bernoulli Drive, an area off Westgate Boulevard south of U.S. 290 and east of Mopac (Loop 1), and Nature of the call is not yet known. Preliminary information indicates this resulted in a SWAT situation. Police were trying to evacuate neighbors early Saturday.

Police asked media to hold a briefing at nearby Cowan Primary School. The Austin Police Department will not respond to questions from the media, said Sgt. Said Destiny Silvia.

Local media began streaming in around 7 a.m. to briefing, which was then scheduled for 9:45 a.m..

“We’re going to give you the most information we have at that time,” Silvia said. “Please know that this is a really difficult time to go through. »

Immediately after the shooting

Police blocked residential streets leading to Bernoulli Drive with their patrol vehicles, keeping motorists, bikers and pedestrians away from the area.

More: Two more Austin police officers have died in line-of-duty shootings since 2000

Watson joined Austin Police Department officials at the hospital.

“I’m heartbroken and praying for the family of the officer we lost and for (a second injured officer) and his family as we raise him up and hope he’s okay,” Watson said.

Around 8 a.m., officials wearing Austin SWAT sweatshirts were seen outside the entrance to the Dell Seton Emergency Center. Police vehicles were lined up for two blocks, and police and firefighters gathered on Red River Street across from the hospital.

Shortly after 8:30 a.m., a procession of Austin police officers on motorcycles, police cruisers, ambulances and Austin Fire Department vehicles left the hospital and headed east to the office from the Travis County Medical Examiner.

The Austin Police Retired Officers Association posted an article on X, formerly Twitter, commenting on the death.

“Our hearts are heavy this morning with the news that one of our brothers with APD was shot and killed in the line of duty,” the message read. “Please pray for his family, the entire APD family and for the speedy recovery of a second officer injured in the same incident.”

Jerry Joe Benson, who lives on Cohoba Drive around the corner from where police said the shooting took place, said he did not hear any gunshots but was awakened around 4 a.m. by the flashing red and blue lights of patrol vehicles outside.

After learning there had been a shooting, Benson, a 38-year-old U.S. Navy veteran, baked blueberry lemon muffins and brought coffee to the officers stationed on the perimeter.

“If I lost a colleague, I would feel terrible,” Benson told the American-Statesman. “I know this is a difficult time for people to go through.”

The last police officer to die in an on-duty shooting was Officer Jaime Padron in April 2012.

This is a developing story and will be updated with additional information.

Staff writer Lily Kepner contributed reporting.

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