Investigator Lemuel Bruce was shot and killed at about 3:30 am while conducting surveillance as part of an ongoing arson investigation in the Timbergrove and Heights areas.
He and six other investigators were conducting surveillance following a string of vehicle fires. Investigator Bruce noticed a car matching the description near the intersection of Seamist Drive and West 18th Street, four blocks away from where another vehicle fire had been set minutes earlier. He was in radio contact with the other investigators and was attempting to coordinate a stop of the vehicle when the man opened fire on him, striking him multiple times.
Despite his wounds, Investigator Bruce was able to return fire. The subject committed suicide.
Investigator Bruce was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran. He had served with the Houston Fire Department for 16 years and had been assigned to the Houston Fire Marshal’s Office as a sworn arson investigator for five years. He is survived by his wife, 12-year-old daughter, and 8-year-old son.