Fort Worth, TX – Fort Worth Police Officer Garrett Hull succumbed to his gunshot wounds Friday night, after being shot in the head earlier in the day.
The incident began at approximately midnight Friday, while undercover Officer Hull was conducting surveillance on a group of three robbery suspects, WFAA reported.
The crew he was watching went inside the Vaquero Sports Bar in the Worth Heights area of the city, and proceeded to rob the patrons.
According to a witness, the trio stormed into the establishment wearing masks and brandishing guns.
They ordered everyone to hit the floor, then took the customers’ cellphones and wallets.
The suspects were fleeing the scene when uniformed and undercover officers confronted them.
One of the suspects spun around and fired his weapon, hitting Officer Hull.
“In their attempt to try to apprehend the three people that were robbing the bar, one of the people exchanged gunfire with my officers and that gunfire struck one of the officers in his forehead,” Fort Worth Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald said during the press conference.
Another officer at the scene returned fire, and fatally shot the assailant who fired the round that hit Officer Hull.
Police arrested two other suspects – one male and one female.
Officer Hull, a 17-year veteran of the force, was rushed to John Peter Smith Hospital in a fellow officer’s patrol vehicle.
“In the midst of it… the officers involved in the active scene actually extricated the officer who was struck in the head and got him here to JPS Hospital,” Chief Fitzgerald said.
No one inside the bar was injured during the shootout, the chief said.
During the press conference, Chief Fitzgerald said the crew was responsible for “numerous armed robberies” in the area, and that three other people had also been shot during the commission of their earlier offenses.
“Unfortunately, here we are again… Feeding into the collective hurt we’ve had recently in the last few years,” Chief Fitzgerald said just after the shooting. “I feel like I stand up here far too often and speak about… officers being assaulted, and officers doing their job to try to create this safe sense of community and cooperation and collaboration in the city of Fort Worth, and being victims of violent acts.”
Chief Fitzgerald commended the officers who intervened in the robbery, and said the police force will continue to stand up to those who victimize the community.
Officer Hull succumbed to his injuries at around 9:40 p.m. Friday night.
The chief has noted that Officer Hull was an organ donor, so his commitment to service will not end with his death.
"We've lost a true hero," Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald said after the officer's death, according to Dallas News. "Someone that has dedicated more than one tour of service to this great city was senselessly killed by three known criminals, two of which are in custody now."
The killers are being charged with aggravated robbery and capital murder.
Officer Hull leaves behind a wife and two daughters.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Fort Worth Officer Hull, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Officer Garrett Hull, your life mattered.