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Waco police: Suspect in fatal shooting opened fire before officers shot, killed him

Waco police: Suspect in fatal shooting opened fire before officers shot, killed him

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Two people are dead after a suspect in a fatal shooting opened fire and police shot and killed him Tuesday morning at an apartment on the corner of Rambler Drive and Sanger Avenue, Waco Police said.

A family member confirmed Tuesday night that the victim of the initial shooting was Alva Stem Jr., 65. His late father, Alva Stem Sr., worked for 40 years as director of parks and recreation and the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum for the city of Waco. Alva Stem Jr.’s cousin, Wiley Stem III, worked for the city 44 years and retired last year as city manager.

Tax records list Alva Stem Jr. as an owner of the apartment building.

Waco police responded to a call at 10:07 a.m. reporting a man had shot another man at the Rex-Plex Apartments, 701 Rambler Drive near the Waco Family YMCA, Police Chief Sheryl Victorian said.

Officers arrived five minutes after the call and found Stem dead with two gunshot wounds to the abdomen, according to a police press release. The suspect in the shooting initially barricaded himself in an apartment, Victorian said. A SWAT team and a negotiation team were sent.

As the SWAT team was staging, the man walked out of the apartment with a gun and fired multiple shots, Victorian said.

“Our officers subsequently fired at the suspect who had a weapon,” she said. “Officers were very, very careful in their approach.”

The man was still alive and armed after he was shot, and officers “slowly engaged” him and attempted life-saving measures before calling over emergency medical personnel who were nearby. He was taken to a local hospital, where he died. His is not yet being named, “pending identification and notification of next of kin,” according to the press release.

Nine officers fired, Victorian said.

She said she did not yet have information on a potential motive in the initial shooting or the relationship between the two men.

“This is a very, very tragic situation for two families,” Victorian said.

It is not yet known how many shots were fired, but police were able to check neighboring apartment units and make sure no one else was injured, she said.

In addition to the weapon the man had when he was killed, police found a 12-gauge shotgun at the scene, Victorian said.

All nine officers who fired are on administrative leave, which is standard practice after officer involved shootings.

The department and Texas Rangers are conducting a joint investigation.

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Hailing from the Chicagoland area, Amaris E. Rodriguez is a 2019 graduate of Northeastern Illinois University and formerly worked the Journal & Topics news organization in Des Plains, Illinois.

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