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Texas police shoot woman, 93

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Vivian Kuo, (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, a town of approximately 4,600 people about 150 miles south of Dallas, was shot multiple times Tuesday.

A man believed to be a relative of Golden’s made the 911 call asking for help from police, Robertson County District Attorney Coty Siegert said.

“What I understand is (Hearne police) were called out because a woman was brandishing a firearm,” 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 Stephen Stem told Golden to drop her weapon at least three times.

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

Elderlywoman-shotShe was transported to a local hospital, where she died.

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.”

According to police, the Texas Rangers have a revolver believed to have been in Golden’s possession at the time of the shooting.

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.”


  • Ken

    I don't see any problems with what the cop did, he warned her several times and she did not drop the gun. If you have a gun pointed at you and you hesitate there is a chance that they will be the one going home and you are the dead one. At 93, does anyone know if she was fully aware of what she was doing? if not, it doesn't matter how nice she usually is, she could have shot.

  • MyTakeOnIt

    Lovely. Just because she was normally sweet and 93 does not diminish the danger. At one time sixteen was sweet.

  • Kerri

    Well this one I am up-in-the-air with. Before I read it I thought "what is happening to police officers everywhere?" but here, I'm not sure what to think. I think something could have been done differently, as Ken suggested, maybe scaring her a little – not firing right away. However, I also agree with mytakeonit – 93 or 39, this woman still had a gun in her possession – the only thing I see here is that it says she was believed to have a gun, I don't think any officer should be able to fire a fatal shot at anyone with the "belief" that he/she has a gun…I am not sure with this one but I will say this one is a little different, I do not think this was a power trip and the family member also said she had a gun – at 93 I'm sure she knew what could happen holding a weapon and not doing as asked by the police (Although on the other hand, I have known some officers to continue to ask over-and-over —- you're never really sure so why take that chance?) Maybe she wanted to be shot at 93 some people don't think straight and maybe she just was "done" with life…that's another thing, even if she was sweet any other time, at that age she could have been going through some sort of mental/mind change – Not sure what they call it but I'm sure you know what I'm talking about…like Dementia or Alzheimer's — something like that and she wasn't the Mrs. Sully everyone knew…we're women – that happens with us, even at 93 (maybe -especially- at 93) I'm sorry she is gone but no, I don't think the officer did anything wrong in this case, at least not intentionally

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