Texas Police Chief gunned down during traffic stop

(KENS5) -- ELMENDORF, Texas -- Elmendorf chief of police Michael Pimentel died Saturday as a result of gunshot wounds he suffered in the far southeast part of Bexar County.

A witness told KENS 5 she saw Pimentel go down in the middle of the street after being shot by a young resident of the small city. The woman, named Jennifer, said the pair got into some sort of altercation before three shots were fired.

The officer, who was in his 60s, was eventually transported to University Hospital via AirLIFE. The witness said the officer did not look good.

An Elmendorf police officer was shot Saturday in the far southeast part of Bexar County.

Deputies arrived on scene and took the 24-year-old suspect into custody. He's been identified as Joshua Manuel Lopez, according to the Bexar County Sheriff's Office.

Sheriff Susan Pamerleau was called to the scene. She told KENS 5 the shooting stemmed from a traffic stop that went awry. Pamerleau would not comment on the officer's condition; however, the San Antonio Police Department tweeted that the officer died.

Hours later, the sheriff confirmed the deceased as Pimentel. She said he was a devoted husband and father who lived in the area he served. According to a meeting agenda from 2003, Pimentel served as police chief for the San Antonio Independent School District, beginning in 2002.

Officials said the shooter would be charged with capital murder of a police officer. The witness KENS 5 spoke with said the suspect is a neighbor and has a history of mental illness. Pamerleau told KENS 5 Lopez has an outstanding graffiti warrant, but couldn't confirm if that motivated the shooting.

So far, Lopez has only been booked on the graffiti charge.

The gunfire erupted near East 9th Street and South 1st Avenue at around 11:40 a.m. Elmendorf sits near the Bexar-Wilson county line, just inside S.E. Loop 1604. SAPD said it would aid in the investigation.

The Heroes Memorial Foundation, a non-profit organization that manages the Facebook page '53 Hours,' asked its followers to 'shine a light for police chief Michael Pimentel' every evening, from Aug. 23 through Saturday, Aug. 30., in remembrance of the chief.


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