A police officer was critically wounded, one suspect was killed and another suspect was in custody Tuesday after “all hell broke loose” in far west Fort Worth.
The officer, identified late Tuesday as Matt Pearce, a patrol officer in the West Division, was shot multiple times while pursuing two suspects in a wooded area. He was flown by helicopter ambulance to John Peter Smith Hospital.
He was in critical condition Tuesday night, police said in a news release.
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Before the shooting, a father and son from Parker County led officers on a chase that ended about 3 p.m. on a semi-rural road in far west Fort Worth between Interstates 20 and 30, west of West Loop 820.
Ed R. McIver, 42, who was being sought on felony warrants, was fatally shot by police.
His son, Ed R. McIver Jr., 20, was caught about 6:30 p.m. He was being held Wednesday morning at Mansfield Jail with his bond set at more than $2 million.
Linda McIver of Weatherford, mother and grandmother of the men, said the comfort she felt after her grandson was caught was tempered by her grief.
“I don’t have to worry about him … but I don’t feel any better that my son is dead,” she said.
She does not believe that her grandson shot the officer.
“My son? That’s possible, but not my grandson,” Linda McIver said. “He’s not dangerous. He’s got a heart of gold.”
About 2:30 p.m. officers were attempting to stop an SUV occupied by the McIvers to serve felony warrants on the father when the vehicle took off, police said. After a 15- to 20-minute pursuit, the chase ended in the 400 block of Longvue Avenue with the two men running into a wooded area.
Officers followed, and a “minute or two” into the foot chase, “officers were met with gunfire,” the news release said.
Pearce was shot, as other officers returned fire, hitting one of the men, identified as the elder McIver, who was later pronounced dead at the scene.
After Pearce was hit, other officers used a trauma kit to administer medical treatment before they carried him to the helicopter ambulance.
“He was awake, alert and very vocal in the emergency room,” said an officer who had been briefed on the wounded officer’s condition by Fort Worth Police Chief Joel Fitzgerald. “That’s the fighting spirit we want to see.”
Officers scoured the area around Longvue Avenue for almost three hours before capturing the younger McIver.
He was being interviewed by detectives late Tuesday and faces charges of attempted capital murder, evading arrest and unlawful carrying of a weapon, the news release said.
Chase started in Fort Worth
Earlier Tuesday afternoon, a team of U.S. marshals, deputies from the Parker County Sheriff’s Department and Weatherford police were searching for the elder McIver.
“We had a stack of warrants on” McIver, Parker County Sheriff Larry Fowler said.
The offenses in the warrants included assault, interference with an emergency call and two for skipping out on bail. The Fort Worth news release included the offenses of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, and aggravated assault/family violence.
The chase began when he was spotted by the plainclothes fugitive officers in a silver Ford Escape on Interstate 30 near the Central Market on South Hulen Street, officials said. They called for marked cars to make a traffic stop, and Fort Worth police joined the pursuit, which went south on Hulen to Vickery Boulevard and eventually onto westbound Interstate 20.
A woman and her mother said they watched two men in a SUV speed by on the I-20 frontage road, followed by three waves of patrol cars.
Christina Robinson said she counted about 24 patrol cars as the vehicles flew onto I-20.
“They must have been going 90 to 95 miles per hour as they got on the freeway,” Robinson said. “I could tell there were two men, but I could not tell much else. It looked like one man was bald.”
‘All hell broke loose’
About 15 minutes later, the men stopped the SUV in the 400 block of Longvue and ran into a muddy, wooded area.
A witness, who declined to give his name, described a chaotic and confusing scene as the shooting unfolded.
“It looked like all hell broke loose,” the man said. “Cops came from everywhere. We saw them head south of Camp Bowie West. We thought maybe a bank had been robbed.”
As police searched for McIver, streets in the area, including Longvue and Chapin Road, were blocked.
As more than 100 officers searched through sometimes muddy terrain near Mary’s Creek, residents in nearby homes were told to stay indoors.
Several dozen law enforcement vehicles set up a perimeter within about a two-mile radius of the shooting. An officer with a tactical rifle could be seen scanning a creek from his perch at an overpass along Camp Bowie West.
At the nearby Lost Creek Golf Course, four police cars were parked along Northview Drive where many well-appointed homes include back yards opening up to the woods where the suspect was believed to be hiding. Officers a few hundred feet apart moved through the area, peeking into the trees.
Still other officers gathered at Linklea Drive and Linkhaven Drive behind the Temptations Caberet near where Camp Bowie West Boulevard meets Interstate 30, to discuss strategy before fanning out into the residential and roadside commercial area.
The news release said detectives will determine if one or both McIvers fired at officers. A handgun was found near the body of the older man. When the younger man was caught, he had a rifle.
‘Give yourself up’
Linda McIver said she was at her Weatherford home Tuesday afternoon when she got a phone call alerting her to turn on the news.
“When they put my grandson’s picture up there, then we knew for sure,” McIver said.
Linda McIver said her son had moved away from Weatherford four to six months ago. She didn’t know where he moved, adding that they were somewhat estranged.
“We just didn’t see eye to eye on a lot of things,” she said.
Linda McIver said she used to have a good relationship with her son, a father of five who remains married but is separated from his third wife.
“We were all very close. We got together on the weekends about every other weekend. We’d go out to eat, come here and play cards or dominoes,” she said. “He did things with his children and wife. They were always going camping or doing things together.”
But after serving time in prison, her son returned home a changed man, Linda McIver said.
“Once he came home, it was like none of that existed anymore,” she said.
The elder McIver’s criminal record from the early 1990s in Parker County includes theft of livestock, assault with bodily injury, burglary of a building and unlawfully carrying a weapon, public records show.
Tarrant County court records show he was sentenced to five years in prison on Sept. 9, 2003, on felony convictions for aggravated assault of a public servant with a deadly weapon and evading arrest. He was convicted of displaying a gun and fleeing from a North Richland Hills police officer that March.
A few days after being sentenced to prison, he also pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of evading arrest during an encounter with Crowley police in October 2002. He got a 120-day jail sentence.
“ He told me they would never take him back” to prison, Linda McIver said. “That if he got in any more trouble, that they would never take him back alive. I believed that with all my heart and soul.”
Linda McIver said she last saw her grandson almost a month ago because he had been out of town working on a welding job.
A Fort Worth police negotiator called her house Tuesday afternoon, she said, seeking the family’s assistance in locating her grandson, whom she described as a “gentle and loving boy.”
‘Continue to pray’
Dozens of police officers and community leaders arrived at JPS after the shooting. Chief Fitzgerald was joined by Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price at two JPS news conferences.
Fitzgerald, who became police chief in October, was somber as he addressed the media.
“We all know what we sign up for, but we don’t sign up for being shot,” Fitzgerald said.
Price said she had spoken to the officer’s wife who is “a strong young woman.” She said the wife was feeling prayers and thoughts in support of her husband.
“In Fort Worth, people rally around those in need,” Price said.
Pearce joined the Fort Worth police force in July 2009. He is assigned to the West Patrol Division, the news release said.
The community support was reminiscent of that given to Euless two weeks ago, when police officer David Hoffer was fatally shot.
On March 1, at about the same time as Tuesday’s shooting, Hofer was ambushed when he and two other officers responded to a report of shots being fired at J.A. Carr Park in Euless. The shooter, Jorge Brian Gonzalez, a 22-year-old drug addict who had been released from jail four hours earlier, was shot and killed by Euless police.
The same Air One helicopter that did a flyover at Hofer’s memorial service was in the air Tuesday, assisting in the search for the suspect.
Staff writers Gordon Dickson, Ryan Osborne, Domingo Ramirez Jr., Sarah Bahari and Bill Hanna contributed to this article.