A Houston police officer is being called a hero after preventing a potential mass shooting at a Texas mall back in February.
Sgt. Kendrick Simpo’s heroic actions took place earlier this year but are now gaining attention. The brave man was working an extra job at The Galleria when a call came over the radio that a man was in the area of Macy’s with a gun.
Simpo and a security guard headed in the direction of the suspect. He knew a dance competition was happening in the vicinity, so he did not draw his weapon.
“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,” he told ABC 13.
Simpo saw the man by the entrance to the Westin Ballroom holding a rifle, a Bible, and wearing a mask. All Simpo had on at the time was a soft vest and was only carrying a handgun. He knew he would be outmatched.
“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,” Simpo explained. “My handgun and his rifle, I was already at a disadvantage.”
But the brave man tackled the suspect, Guido Herrera, and grabbed the gun. He was able to redirect the rifle so that it pointed toward the ceiling while he kept Herrera immobile until help arrived.
Herrera was quickly arrested and found to have 120 rounds of ammunition and a handgun. Since he did not fire the weapon, he was only charged with a misdemeanor under Texas law.
Shortly after the incident at The Galleria, Herrera was arrested for going to the Houston FBI headquarters and requesting a meeting with the director. He was charged with another misdemeanor when a handgun was discovered in his car.
Last week, Herrera was sentenced to one year in jail for the charge related to the mall incident.