Suspect captured after La. police shooting

Woman arrested in Harris County today charged with 2 counts of murder in hotel shootout

The Houston Chronicle

HARRIS COUNTY, Tex. — A woman who fled after a violent shootout with Louisiana police, which left two officers dead on Friday, was captured early today at a trailer park in east Harris County, authorities said.

The U.S. Marshals Service violent offenders task force arrested Tanya Smith, 26, about 7 a.m. at the mobile home park near the East Freeway and FM 2100, officials said.

Smith and her boyfriend, Dennis Clem, 24, were at a Budget Inn hotel in downtown Bastrop, La., when they were confronted by local police and began shooting, authorities said.

Two veteran Bastrop detectives, identified by Louisiana state police as John R. Smith, 40, and Charles D. Wilson Jr., 34, were struck by gunfire and died at the scene.

Clem was also struck and died at the scene, and two paramedics were wounded, officials said.

Authorities say police cordoned off the area but Smith managed to escape. Louisiana state police said she was helped by three people, who were arrested Saturday as accessories to the homicides.

U.S. Marshals Service investigators had been searching for Clem after he was identified as a felon in possession of a weapon.

The manhunt for Clem intensified after he was linked to a July 14 double homicide in the 1000 block of Nadolney in east Harris County.

Harris County sheriff's detectives think Smith was at the home during the shooting and had been on the run with Clem ever since.

The Bastrop detectives on Friday may have gone to the hotel to search for the suspects after Harris County sheriff's deputies alerted other law enforcement agencies about the killings on Nadolney, officials said.

Smith was arrested within 48 hours of the gunbattle with Bastrop police after investigators received information that she was back in Texas.

She remains in custody at the Harris County Jail, awaiting extradition to Louisiana, where she has been charged there with two counts of first-degree murder of police officers.

Copyright 2007 The Houston Chronicle

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