HFD arson investigator killed in the line of duty for the first time in local history

State & Regional

HFD Arson unmarked vehicle with bullet holes at 18th & Seamist

HOUSTON (CW39) In a shocking turn of events in the Houston Heights Friday morning, a Houston Fire Department arson investigator has died in the line of duty.

In a statement issued Friday morning shortly before 9am, HFD said:

The Houston Fire Department is saddened to report that Arson Investigator Lemuel Bruce (44) has been shot and killed in the line of duty, this morning, October 16, 2020, while conducting surveillance during an arson investigation. He is the first HFD Arson investigator to die in the line of duty.

Investigator Bruce began his career with HFD in 2003 and has been an investigator for five years. He has previously served out of HFD Fire Stations 77, 96, 46, 42, 64, 6 and 12. 

Please, keep the family, friends and members of the HFD Arson Bureau in your thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

Houston Fire Department

Leaves behind a wife and two children, 12 and 8 years old. He suffered several gunshot wounds to his torso around 5am this morning and was rushed to an area hospital where he died from his injuries.

In video captured early this morning, an arson unmarked arson vehicle had multiple bullet holes at 2100 block of West 18th at Seamist in northwest Houston.

The suspect is also deceased after an exchange of gunfire on scene. No official word on the shooter’s identity.

Arrangement are currently pending at this time.

Houston Police officials gave an official statement on camera with more details.

The Greater Houston Heights has been on edge for over 2 weeks after multiple arson incidents have happened. 28-year-old Joshua A. Rauch was charged a week ago in connection with Heights fires set to unoccupied vehicles in the area.

No official word on if the two investigations are connected at this time.

Continue to follow this story for more developments in this case.

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