Police in Texas have arrested a White male and are questioning others after a gunman opened fire at the campaign headquarters of Zena Stephens, the Prairieview A&M University police chief seeking the Democratic nomination to run for Jefferson County Sheriff.
Stephens, who is African-American, told NBC News that she was standing outside her headquarters in Beaumont when a White male in a Jeep rode up and shouted the n-word. A short while later, Stephens said a shot shattered the building’s glass door.
The five people standing outside the office were not harmed in the attack. About 25 people were inside the building during the apparent racial incident.
From NBC News:
“Anytime something like that happens with innocent people around you’re concerned for them,” Stephens said. “I don’t know if it was a random act or whether it was targeted, but I just think it is, you know, ignorance.”
She said the shooting was “more shocking and scary” because she had loved ones in the building, including her father, mother and niece.
No bullet was found at the scene. Police believe the shot may have come from an Airsoft gun or a pellet gun.
Around 10:45 p.m., police later arrested a White male outside a home in the 8500 block of Newfield. A Jeep with the same license plate as the one that drove by Stephens’ headquarters was also found at the home, 12NewsNow reports. Two guns, including a BB-style gun, were found inside the Jeep.
The man was arrested on an unrelated charge. Police were set to continue questioning him about Monday night’s shooting. Police confirmed two firearms were found inside of the Jeep. Three other men and a woman were taken in by police for questioning.
The suspect was not immediately identified. Property and vehicle records indicate the Jeep and the home belong to two separate individuals. Beaumont police also confirmed to 12News that they believed the same suspect may have been behind another criminal act on 11th Street, when a window was shot-out at the MetroPCS store near the College Street intersection.
The suspect has not been identified. An investigation continues.