A police chase ended in a deadly shootout between the suspect and law enforcement officers Wednesday on Interstate 30 in Rockwall County, as well as significant amounts of cocaine seized.
The Texas Rangers have been called in to investigate the incident that led to the closure of the westbound lanes on I-30 from Horizon Road to the Dalrock exit and affected the southbound lanes at Dalrock and Sunset Boulevard from about 4 p.m. till 9:30 p.m. on November 1.
Rudy Chavira, 36, had been targeted in a joint operation conducted by the North Texas Sheriff’s Criminal Interdiction Unit (NTXCIU) and the DEA. The deputies first came into contact with the suspect while attempting a traffic stop on his vehicle on I-30 near Rowlett.
Chavira allegedly opened fire on them, taking off westbound on I-30. The chase ended near Dalrock Road when the suspect encountered heavy traffic and was forced to come to a stop.
Deputies approached Chavira’s vehicle, and a shootout ensued. Although the suspect was struck and injured, no other law enforcement personnel or bystanders were reported wounded.
Chavira died of his injuries at a nearby hospital that same evening.
For those living in the area, the whole incident caused shock.
“It’s just crazy,” commented nearby resident Ronita Adams, according to Fox 4 KDFW. “This is like a quiet little neighborhood. Nothing happens or anything like that.”
Some motorists shared their reactions to being caught up in the aftermath.
“Hundreds of thousands of cars stopped. No plan. Disorganized. Rerouted trucks through Rowlett after hours of being stuck [on] a bridge,” wrote civilian Shane Reid in response to a post from Rockwall County Sheriff’s Office on Facebook.
“My son has been stuck on his school bus on I-30 since 4:00. Please is there any resolution of the traffic closure?” asked Noel Barrilleaux.
The NTXCIU, the first initiative of its kind seen in the U.S., has so far successfully seized 42,000 fentanyl pills in February and approximately 60 pounds of methamphetamine in August, as covered in The Dallas Express.
The latest operation yielded approximately 12 kilos of cocaine, which both Collin County Sheriff Jim Skinner and Rockwall County Sheriff Terry Garrett applauded in a press release.
“Our deputies are committed to making whatever sacrifices are needed to safeguard the communities they serve, all while navigating the constant and inherent dangers of their mission. I am grateful for their selflessness,” said Skinner.
“These deputies perform a very dangerous job on a daily basis to protect our citizens. We must continue to hold a strong line against the flow of illegal narcotics that continue to take the lives of Americans on a daily basis. The partnerships between our agencies and citizens must remain strong to stem the tide,” said Garrett.
Drug crime is on the rise in Dallas, with 8,603 drug-related offenses logged this year as of November 1, according to the Dallas Police Department’s crime analytics dashboard. This represents a 4.3% hike year over year.
Although the City of Dallas previously estimated that a police force of around 4,000 was necessary to maintain public safety, DPD currently has fewer than 3,200 officers on staff.