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Published on Jun 23, 2009
The Tyler courthouse shooting refers to a February 24, 2005, incident in which David Hernandez Arroyo Sr. opened fire on his ex-wife and son in front of the Smith County Courthouse in Tyler, Texas, then engaged police and court officers in a shootout. Mirabel Estrada, his ex-wife, was killed at the scene, as was Mark Allen Wilson, a downtown resident who attempted to intervene; Arroyo was fatally shot by police after a high-speed pursuit where he repeatedly shot at officers. Two sheriff's deputies, a police officer, and Arroyo's son were wounded.
At the time of the shooting, Estrada and her son, David Hernandez Arroyo Jr., were entering the courthouse for a hearing regarding her ex-husband's failure to pay child support after their 2004 divorce. Estrada's lawyer later stated that his client did not believe her ex-husband to be dangerous.
Arroyo, who had parked nearby, approached his ex-wife and son on the steps outside the Smith County Courthouse and fired on them with a semi-automatic MAK-90 rifle, a semi-automatic rifle styled after the AK-47 assault rifle, hitting Estrada in the head and Arroyo Jr. in the leg. The shots brought a response from nearby sheriff's deputies and police, and Arroyo and the officers began trading gunfire. The officers were armed only with pistols, and Arroyo wounded several and forced them to retreat.