Man Shot and Killed by Off-Duty Midland Police Officer

Staff Report
NewsWest 9

MIDLAND - A man is dead after being shot by an off-duty Midland Police Officer. The Midland Police Department tells NewsWest9 it happened around 1:00 Saturday morning at The Ranch in the 4400 block of North Big Spring.

Police say 27-year-old Jeremy Waller was involved in a fight inside the business and was asked to leave. Waller returned to The Ranch and started another argument outside the business.

A MPD Officer working off-duty, 29-year-old Joey Garcia, attempted to arrest Waller, but he resisted and pushed Officer Garcia to the ground.

A struggle ensued with Waller ending up on top of Officer Garcia. He then struck the officer in the head with the handle of a knife. Officer Garcia was able to get the knife away from Waller by using his baton, but Waller was able to retrieve the knife. MPD says Waller then opened the blade and started moving in an aggressive manner toward Officer Garcia.

As other officers were arriving on the scene, Officer Garcia fired two shots at Waller, hitting him in the chest. Waller was transported to Midland Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Officer Garcia was transported to Midland Memorial Hospital where he was treated for his wound receiving nine staples to close the cut on his head.

Officer Garcia has been with MPD eight years and has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal and criminal investigation. The MPD Shoot Team and the Texas Rangers are investigating the shooting. This is standard procedure following the use of deadly force by an officer.

The last officer involved shooting occurred on June 5, 2009, when Officer Chris Lummus fatally shot 44-year-old Jerry Rheinland in the 1600 block of N. J Street when he confronted officers with a gun.  Lummus was no billed by a Midland County Grand Jury and was placed back on full-duty.