A Houston police officer is being called a hero for preventing a possible mass shooting at a Texas mall.
The event took place in February but following some time to process the events, Houston Police Sgt. Kendrick Simpo is just now speaking publically about it.
On Feb. 5, Simpo was working an extra job at The Galleria mall in Houston’s Uptown District when he received a call about a man carrying a rifle near the Macy’s retail store.
Simpo and another security guard rushed toward Macy’s, but along the way, they realized that there was a dance competition inside the mall with hundreds of children and adults. This was alarming to them as the crowd was only a few hundred feet away from Macy’s which was close enough for someone with a rifle to reach them.
“I did know there was a dance competition with little kids going on at the Westin Ballroom, so I didn’t pull my weapon out because I didn’t want to be running towards the Macy’s area, which is past the ballroom area, with the gun out and startle anyone,” Simpo told KTRK-TV.
Simpo, 41, quickly identified the suspect, later identified as Guido Herrera. The suspect was armed with a rifle in one hand, a Bible in the other, and wearing a shirt with the Punisher logo along with a leather mask with spikes.
“I knew if a person did have a rifle, and they were inside the mall, I was pretty much outnumbered because all I had was a handgun at the time,” he said. “My handgun and his rifle, I was already at a disadvantage.”
Simpo – who has worked off-duty security jobs at the mall for nearly a decade – bravely engaged the suspect.
“I could possibly be shot, and it was going to hurt, but that’s when the fight or flight kicked in. I decided to fight,” Simpo told the Houston Chronicle.
“I quickly bum-rushed, tackled him. And my first reaction was to make sure that I get a hold of the rifle. No matter what I grabbed, make sure I grabbed that rifle,” Simpo explained. “I had in my mind I was going to get shot. I just had to bear the pain, I knew it was going to hurt, and I was like, ‘Whatever I do, I cannot let go of this rifle.'”
Simpo overpowered Herrera before others helped pin down Herrera, and he was arrested without a single gunshot being fired.
Law enforcement while searching Herrera found a carrying a rifle, a handgun, and 120 rounds of ammunition.
Since Herrera was prevented from pointing the weapon at anyone or firing the weapon, so he was only charged with a misdemeanor.
As with other deranged, but still, on the streets, walking time bombs, a month later, Herrera was causing problems again.
On March 18th, Herrera caused another ruckus, this time at the FBI’s Houston headquarters. He demanded to meet with the director of the agency while having a gun in the car during the exchange with authorities. Once again, Herrera was only charged with a misdemeanor because he did not fire the weapon or point the firearm at anyone.
Simpo said, “I definitely know what I signed up for 20 years ago when I got into this profession.”
Thank the Lord that this maniac was prevented from hurting or killing anyone because of the heroic actions of Simpo, the other guard, and even private citizens who helped to secure Herrera once disarmed.
Yes, Simpo is a police officer and should have done everything necessary to protect life, but as we saw in Uvalde, Texas, not all officers are willing to put their life at risk when called upon.
Simpo did, thus deserves to be considered a hero for his actions.
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