Texas Bus Hijacking Leaves 2 Officers Wounded and Gunman Dead


A gunman hijacked a public bus in Texas on Sunday morning, prompting an hourlong police chase through several cities and a shootout that wounded two officers and killed the gunman, the authorities said.

The gunman got on a Dallas Area Rapid Transit bus around 11 a.m., with one passenger already on board, in Richardson, Texas. Then the gunman opened fire, shattering several windows, and demanded that the driver keep driving, the transit agency said in a statement.

The gunman, whom the authorities later identified as Ramon Thomas Villagomez, did not give a specific destination for the bus driver or provide any explanation for his actions, said Gordon Shattles, a spokesman for the transit agency.

Mr. Villagomez, 31, was a suspect in the murder case of his girlfriend out of San Antonio and the aggravated assault with a deadly weapon of a relative out of Brazoria County, the authorities said.

The driver immediately alerted the transit police without Mr. Villagomez noticing, Mr. Shattles said.

The bus drove through several jurisdictions and cities in the Dallas-Fort Worth region, including Richardson, Garland, Rowlett and Rockwall, on President George Bush Turnpike — about 30 miles in total, Mr. Shattles said.

Multiple police departments responded to the pursuit, during which gunfire was exchanged.

Two officers, one from the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Department, and another from the Garland Police Department, were shot. Both had injuries that were not life-threatening, the transit agency said.

The chase came to an end around noon when the bus drove over spikes on the highway in Rowlett, Texas.

Mr. Villagomez exited the bus, exchanged gunfire with police officers and was pronounced dead at the scene, Mr. Shattles said.

The bus driver and the passenger were uninjured, he said.

The episode came less than 24 hours after an officer was fatally shot and two others were wounded after they responded to a call of an assault and domestic disturbance on Saturday in San Marcos, Texas, about 225 miles south of Dallas.

Dallas County is currently under a stay-at-home order because of the coronavirus pandemic, which meant ridership on this route was much lower than usual.

“The fact that this happened at this time, it could have been much, much worse,” Mr. Shattles said.

Aimee Ortiz contributed reporting.



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