Deputy Sheriff Darren Almendarez was shot and killed while off duty when he interrupted three men attempting to steal a catalytic converter at about 8:40 pm.
He and his wife were returning to their car in a grocery store parking lot at 2929 FM 1960 when he observed the three men attempting to steal the catalytic converter. He instructed his wife to run from the scene before confronting the subject. A struggle ensued after one of the men produced a handgun. During the struggle, Deputy Almendarez pulled out his off-duty weapon, and shots were exchanged in which he and two of the three suspects were wounded.
Deputy Almendarez was transported to Houston Northwest Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds. The two wounded suspects drove themselves to the same hospital where they were taken into custody. The third suspect was arrested a few days later.
Deputy Almendarez had served with the Harris County Sheriff’s Office for 23 years and was assigned to the Auto Theft Task Force. He is survived by his wife.