Texas SWAT officer, barricaded gunman killed in shootout during hostage situation; 2 captives found dead

A barricaded gunman holding three hostages in Austin, Texas, shot and killed a SWAT officer early Saturday before being killed at the scene, authorities said.

Two apparent victims were also found dead inside the home after police forced their way inside around 4 a.m. and traded fire with the suspect, interim Austin Police Chief Robin Henderson told reporters at the scene.

The officer killed was later identified as Officer Jorge Pastore. Pastore began his career with the Austin Police Department in June 2019 before being commissioned as a police officer in January 2020.

“My heart is heavy today,” Henderson wrote on X. “Please help me and our APD family pay tribute to SPO Jorge Pastore for his brave & heroic actions.”

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Henderson said officers responded to the home shortly before 3 a.m. by a woman screaming that she was being stabbed. One hostage escaped the home before officers arrived and told police the suspect was armed with a knife.

Officers tried to enter the home but were met with gunfire and retreated without returning fire, Henderson said. A SWAT team was called to assist officers.

“SWAT officers arrived on scene and forced entry into the residence … to rescue the victims,” Henderson said. “As SWAT officers entered the suspect immediately fired his gun at the officers and the SWAT officers returned fire.”

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Two officers and the suspect were struck by the gunfire. The suspect was killed at the scene and the two officers were taken to a hospital, where one died and the second was in stable condition, Henderson said.

Pastore served the Austin community in a variety of capacities during his career, including as a member of the Honor Guard and SWAT Gold Team. He is survived by his wife, two stepsons, his parents and two sisters.

The identities of the wounded officer, suspect and two other victims were not immediately released.

Henderson said that multiple officers had opened fire during the shootout, which will be investigated by both the Austin Police Department’s internal affairs division and the department’s special investigation unit in conjunction with the Travis County District Attorney’s Office.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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