The prosecution of a man accused of killing a police officer is underway in Fort Worth. Testimony started on Monday against defendant Timothy Huff, nearly one week after he was hospitalized for claiming he swallowed a razor blade by mistake.
Huff faces capital murder charges in the death of Garrett Hull, a Fort Worth Police officer, who was killed during a shootout in 2018 while investigating a string of robberies.
The Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office reported that Huff said he had chest pains last Tuesday and was taken to JPS for evaluation. Once there, he said that he “accidentally swallowed a razor blade.”
Several bar robberies in the Fort Worth area had been linked to three suspects: Huff, Dacion Steptoe, and Samuel Mayfield.
A squad of undercover and uniformed policemen surveilling the three suspects followed them to the Los Vaqueros Sports Bar on September 13, 2018, where the officers witnessed a robbery in progress.
Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald said that the officers were cautious because patrons were present, so they waited for the three men to leave the bar before confronting them. When the men walked outside and around the corner, police tried to arrest them, prompting the suspects to fire on the officers.
During the confrontation, a bullet struck Hull in the head. Officers decided to rush Hull to the hospital in a police car instead of waiting for help, but he died of his injuries.
Steptoe was shot and killed by police during the exchange of gunfire.
The two surviving suspects surrendered to the police. Both individuals have been charged with capital murder and, if found guilty, could be put to death for their crimes.
Officer Hull, who was 40 years old, was married with two children. He had joined the Fort Worth Police Department 17 years earlier and was known as the “glue” that kept the criminal intel section functioning smoothly.
On Monday morning, his widow took the stand and spoke about the days leading to her husband’s death. She said her husband was apprehensive about capturing the suspects.
“Well, he said these guys are really dangerous, babe … It’s bad,” Sabrina Hull told jurors. “He said he felt like there was going to be a shooting involved. And I was like, ‘Don’t put that in the universe. Don’t say something like that. I don’t want to think about that.'”
Witnesses inside Los Vaqueros during the incident testified that they called 911 moments before Hull was shot.
“I just kept on thinking about my kids. And seeing the gun behind my husband’s back after. I have really bad anxiety. Now it’s worse,” testified Norma Martinez, who was present for the heist.
There were approximately 10 patrons in the bar during the robbery. They sustained no injuries.