Suspected burglar shot by Texarkana officer was armed with a spoon
TEXARKANA, TX (KSLA) - The Texas Rangers are investigating an officer involved shooting in Texarkana.
The incident happened just after 2:00 a.m. Monday in the 2800 block of Page Street. Police were called to the area on a report of a burglary in progress. When an officer arrived, he found the suspect, 35-year-old Dennis Grigsby, in the garage of the property. The officer, whose name has not been released, reportedly ordered Grigsby to stop but his demands were ignored and Grigsby allegedly went towards the officer in an "aggressive manner" while holding a metal object.
Police say that's when the officer fired a single shot which struck Grigsby in the chest. Grigsby was transported to St. Michael's Hospital where he later died. His body has been sent to the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Science for an autopsy.
The family of Dennis Grigsby lives right across the street from where the incident happened. Family members say Grigsby had mental problems.
“They just told me that they shot him in his chest. They said they couldn't tell me anything else. I'm just sick. I just can't believe this," said his mother, Evelyn Grigsby. She went on to explain that she knows her son would not hurt anyone, "we don't have any guns or anything.”
Grigsby's stepfather, R. Robinson, added he did not pose a threat to anyone, "he just wanted help and we couldn't help him."
As of Monday afternoon, police still hadn't released more specific details in the moments leading up to Grigsby's death but they did say that the metal object Grigsby was holding was a spoon.
"It appeared the suspect was holding an item, with the bowl of the spoon in his palm and the shank of the spoon coming out from the bottom of his hand like someone would hold a knife" says Sergeant Aaron Brower with the Texarkana, Texas Police Department.
Although police have released limited details, we do know what was happening moments before the incident, at least from the perspective of the person who dialed 911.
Police have released the audio from the full 7-minute 911 tape that brought officers to the home that reported an attempted burglarly.
During the call, the caller says there were 8 people in the house. The caller reported hearing bangs on the windows and begged the dispatcher for the officers to get there.
The woman on the phone sounds frantic when she says the man has entered her garage and you can hear crying in the background. "Is there anything in his hands?" the dispatcher asked. "He is beating on the window with it!" said the caller. "He is standing by my window, can the police see him?"
Then a few minutes later, the caller can be heard saying, "The police just shot something."
The officer who shot Grigsby has been placed on administrative leave, his identity has not been released.
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