Armed man dead after Dallas police open fire outside hotel
Authorities have not determined whether police killed the man, who was armed with a handgun, or he committed suicide
By Claire Cardona
The Dallas Morning News
DALLAS — A man is dead after two officers fired on him late Wednesday outside a hotel near Coit Road and Interstate 635 in Far North Dallas, police say.
Maj. Jeff Cotner said authorities have not determined whether police killed the man, who was armed with a handgun, or he committed suicide.
Cotner said multiple shots were fired in the parking lot of the Grand Hotel Dallas. The officers were not wounded.
The man and the officers have not been publicly identified.
Witnesses said the man had been acting erratically before police ordered him to get out of a pickup parked outside the hotel with its engine running.
The officers, who had been scanning license plates in the parking lot, suspected that the truck was stolen, police said. When they approached the man, he displayed a handgun and both officers shot at him.
Police are reviewing dashboard-camera footage and other video to determine what led to the man's death, which occurred in an area that police say is known for drug trafficking and dumping stolen vehicles.
The shooting came the same night protesters rallied in downtown Dallas to show solidarity with residents of Ferguson, Mo., in the wake of the fatal shooting of an unarmed teenager there.
About 200 people gathered peacefully for the Don't Shoot Dallas rally at Main Street Garden between Harwood and St. Paul streets.
The protesters, who carried signs and chanted "No justice, no peace," marched through downtown to Victory Plaza outside American Airlines Center.
Wednesday night's shooting by Dallas police was the third in two weeks.
On Aug. 10, an officer fatally shot 26-year-old Andrew Scott Gaynier, who reportedly was unarmed.
Police said an off-duty officer on neighborhood patrol shot Gaynier when he moved in "a manner perceived to be dangerous to the officer" after trying to force his way into a passing vehicle in north Oak Cliff.
The officer was identified as Senior Cpl. Antonio Hudson, a seven-year department veteran.
The next day, Senior Cpl. Kevin Gladden fatally shot Jose Manuel Gonzalez, 18, who police say was armed with knives.
Police said Gonzalez had assaulted his mother, grandmother and father in a northwest Dallas home, and threatened to stab his father.
When police arrived, Gonzalez approached Gladden, an eight-year veteran of the department, with his hands behind his back.
Witnesses told Gladden that Gonzalez was holding two knives.
Gladden told him to drop the knives and show his hands, police said. He refused and began walking toward the officer, who retreated about three houses away. When Gonzalez pulled a knife out, Gladden shot him.
Neither officer in the earlier shootings was injured.
The Dallas County Medical Examiner's office identified the man as 52-year-old Terence Michael Groessel.
His cause and manner of death were not released Thursday morning. Police have yet to say whether he was killed by police or shot himself.
Groessel is listed as a Garland resident in the Texas Department of Public Safety's sex offender registry. He was a convicted in 1995 for sexually assaulting a child and was sentenced to five years in prison, according to the registry.
In 2013, he was placed on deferred adjudication probation for failing to notify law enforcement about changes in his address.
A motion to revoke his probation was filed in May after a drug test came up positive for methamphetamines.
Copyright 2014 The Dallas Morning News
McClatchy-Tribune News Service