1 killed, several injured when big rig plows into Texas Department of Public Safety office in apparent “intentional” act, officials say

1 killed, several injured when big rig plows into Texas Department of Public Safety office in apparent “intentional” act, officials say


A big rig plowed into a Texas Department of Public Safety office in an apparent “intentional” act, officials said Friday. One person was killed and at least a dozen people were injured, said DPS Sgt. Justin Ruiz at a news conference on Friday afternoon. 

A suspect stole the 18-wheeler and crashed into the office in Brenham, about 75 miles west of Houston, in a “deliberate, heinous act,” said Texas state Sen. Lois Kolkhorst in a statement on social media. 

Ruiz said the suspect, identified as 42-year-old Clenard Parker, was denied his commercial driver’s license the previous afternoon at the Brenham office. A deputy was chasing the stolen rig, which took a hard right turn into the DPS office, and appeared to crash into a driver’s license waiting area, Ruiz said. 

Parker was arrested and is in custody with the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, said Ruiz. He is facing multiple charges.

The driver of a stolen semitrailer intentionally rammed it into a Texas public safety office in a rural town west of Houston on Friday, injuring multiple people, according to a state lawmaker.

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Three people were life-flighted to area hospitals with critical injuries, Ruiz disclosed, one of whom died at the hospital. Three others were transported by ambulance to a local hospital in stable condition, all three of whom were treated and released. 

Eight people were treated on scene and released, Ruiz said. The suspect was not among the injured.

The identification of the deceased person won’t be released until next of kin is notified, officials said.       

Of the airlifted patients, two were flown to St. Joseph Health Regional Hospital in Bryan, Ruiz said, and the third to Memorial Hermann in Houston. 

The three taken by ambulance were transported to Baylor Scott and White in Brenham. 

Kolkhorst, who represents the area, said that no DPS employees suffered serious injuries, and one staffer was trapped “for a period of time” in the building. Ruiz said it was unclear exactly how many of the injured were DPS employees, and how many were civilians.  

Texas Rangers will be handling the investigation.

The Texas Department of Public Safety is a sprawling agency and one of the largest state law enforcement operations in the country. It includes troopers who are a central part of a massive border security operation on the U.S.-Mexico border as well as the Texas Rangers, the state’s top criminal investigators. But the department also has offices across the state that issue driver’s licenses.


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