HOUSTON—On Monday morning it was chaos in North Harris County as law enforcement descended upon the Harlequin Square subdivision for an “active shooter” call.
The man who triggered it all was Ramon Hooks.
“Kinda crazy! It all blew up over an air rifle. It was real intense,” the 25-year-old man said.
Hooks said he had been target practicing at the house next door to his home when his dog got out and he went to look for her. Hooks said he even bumped into the Homeland Security Agent who was house shopping in the neighborhood.
“He was calm. I said, ‘Had you seen my dog?’ He said. ‘Yes, she ran around the back way,’” Hooks said.
Shortly afterward, the federal agent called for help, saying shots had just been fired into a house he was walking through. Deputies confronted Hooks and then retrieved the air rifle and pellets Hooks left on his front porch. They said there’s no evidence the men spoke before that call for help.
Hooks, a US Army specialist who served in Iraq, said he wasn’t aiming at the house where the federal agent had been. He said the target next to that house was an old one.
“If I felt it ricocheted over here I would’ve said so,” he said.
Hooks said he often uses the backyards between the two rows of unfinished houses for target practice with his air rifle, as do the neighborhood kids, and he said the folks who live in the area know these are not real weapons.
Harris County deputies argued otherwise, saying a telescoped air rifle looks very much like the real thing.
“It’s kind of crazy how things were twisted, and I ended up being the person in the back seat,” Hooks said.
Hooks was booked on criminal mischief and released to his wife.
He recalled seeing her walk towards him and said.
“Oh Lord, here it goes,” he said.
Dionne Hooks had shown him the KHOU 11 News clip from Monday where she’d said her husband was in the dog house. Ramon Hooks recounted what she told him.
“Everybody knows it’s you in the doghouse!” he said.
That’s a tough place to be, even for a soldier.