TX: Home Depot Stands Behind Employee Injured in Shooting; Police Mourn Fallen Officer

Liz Carey

Dallas, TX (WorkersCompensation.com) – Home Depot officials said they were horrified to learn one of their employees had been injured in a shooting Tuesday night.

Scott Painter, a loss prevention employee with the store, was holding Armando Louis Juarez, 29, for suspected shoplifting, when an off-duty police officer working part-time at the store learned there was an outstanding felony warrant for Juarez. (For WorkersCompensation.com coverage from earlier in the week, click here.)

Two officers, Rogelio Santander and Crystal Almeida, were called to the store, and were speaking to Juarez, when the off-duty officer stepped away for a moment, according to the arrest warrant. The off-duty officer then heard a report of “shots fired” broadcast over the police radio and returned to the office to find the officers and Painter on the ground with gunshot wounds, the warrant said.

A review of the footage from the officers’ body-camera showed that Juarez had pulled a handgun from his pocket as the two officers were attempting to arrest him, the warrant said. All three victims were taken to the hospital, where Santander died on Wednesday morning, and the two others were operated on. As of Thursday morning, they were listed in critical condition.

A Home Depot spokesman told the Associated Press that the shooting had a deep impact throughout the company’s Atlanta headquarters.

“We’re heartbroken,” said spokesman Stephen Holmes. According to the Associated Press, he said the home improvement store’s corporate leadership has been supporting added that the chain’s leadership team has been actively supporting Painter’s family and offering counseling to his coworkers.

Otherwise, Holmes said the company is referring to police all questions about the shooting and the run-up to it.

Police Chief U. Renee Hall said in a press conference on Wednesday that her department was equally affected.

“We come before you this morning with broken hearts,” Hall said on Wednesday when she announced the death of officer Santander. “We’re asking you to continue to pray for us… This is a trying time for us and we ask for your support at this time.”

Juarez was arrested after a high speed chase on Tuesday night. He was charged with aggravated assault on a public servant and felony theft. On Wednesday, he was charged with capital murder. Juarez was being held at the Dallas County jail on a bond in excess of $1 million.