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Police in Texas fatally shoot 93-year-old woman

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(CNN) — Texas Rangers are investigating why police in a small central Texas town fatally shot a 93-year-old woman at her home.

Pearlie Golden, a longtime resident of Hearne, Texas, a town of approximately 4,600 people situated about 150 miles south of Dallas, was shot multiple times Tuesday.

“What I understand is (Hearne police) were called out because a woman was brandishing a firearm,” Robertson County District Attorney Coty Siegert said.

“An officer asked her to put the handgun down, and when she would not, shots were fired.”

Hearne City Attorney Bryan Russ Jr. said Officer Steven Stem told Golden to drop her weapon at least three times.

Stem fired three times, and Golden was hit at least twice, he said.

The Hearne Police Department placed Stem on administrative leave pending the inquiry.

“We’re very saddened by this. Everybody in the city government is deeply disappointed that this lady was killed,” Russ said. “Now, the investigation is out of our hands. It’s under the Texas Rangers, which is where we want it to be.”

Community members told CNN affiliate KBTX that Golden, known affectionately as “Ms. Sully,” was a sweet woman.

“Even if she did have a gun, she is in her 90s,” Lawanda Cooke told KBTX. “They could have shot in the air to scare her. Maybe she would have dropped it. I don’t see her shooting anyone.”

The case will eventually be presented to a grand jury, which is standard procedure when dealing with officer-involved incidents, Russ said.

In the meantime, Hearne City Council members will meet Saturday to discuss Stem’s employment or whether any disciplinary action will be taken.

“I would expect people to be upset about this, a young police officer shooting a 93-year-old lady,” Russ said. “I’m upset about it. Most of our citizens are upset but at the same time I don’t believe all the facts have come to the surface yet.”


  • John Denton

    Don’t judge the police officer until all of the facts come to light. What people fail to realize a person weather they are a civilian, soldier or police officer is that if you get hit and killed by a bullet you are just as dead weather the bullet was fired by a 9 year old, a 39 year old or a 90 year old. That being said, the whole goal is to go home uninjured and alive at the end of a shift. If someone points a gun at you you defend yourself period. No matter who’s pointing the gun.

  • Joy

    A person has a right by law to have a gun on their property. What law was
    was broken. Already the lies are forming concerning what the police did to try to justify their actions. Witness said the police fired 5 times. How many bullets does it take to stop a 93 yr old lady. Suppose she could not hear or was hard of hearing? The police did not know why she was outside her house with a gun. The police should have handle this situation better. If the lady was white, truly believe he would not have shot her. Now whose going to listen to police officers like this….? A life is a life and it should not matter the race. The are not any witnesses that said she shot her gun except the police…. I wonder why?

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