HOUSTON – A woman who was allegedly sending disturbing emails to local news stations fired shots at the KTRK-TV studios in southwest Houston Thursday morning, according to Houston police.
Michelle Monique Burks has been charged with deadly conduct.
Burks is no stranger to stations, including KHOU, and allegedly claimed that the news organizations were telling her story without her permission. At times, she even sent pictures of her driver license. Her bizarre behavior escalated, moving from those harmless emails to actions with a potentially deadly outcome.
Witnesses said Burks pulled up in front of the studio, located in the 3300 block of Bissonnet, around 9 a.m. and appeared to be recording the station.
“I saw this silver Camaro looking car just, you know, right there with their flashers on on the side of the road and it looked like the lady was just holding up her phone and videotaping the building,” said Katherine Koinis. “I thought it was very strange, but didn’t really think anything of it.”
She then pulled out a gun and started shooting. Four shots were fired into four cars, and another five struck an upstairs corner office in the building. There was a woman working inside at the time.
“We did recover casings from the parking lot, we also recovered casings from the building,” said HPD Sgt. Julie Pleasan. “Nobody was hurt, nobody sustained injuries.”
After a short chase, police caught up to Burks in the 5200 block of Buffalo Speedway. She was compliant as they took her into custody. Police have now charged her with deadly conduct.
Investigators are not sure if the same woman is connected to another incident outside the Channel 13 studio in recent months.
KHOU 11 News stopped by Burks’ northwest Harris County home. No one was home, but neighbors say they’ve always thought she was a bit unstable. She’s even had run-ins with neighbors for parking to close to her driveway.
Right across the street from the station is a children’s day school. The shooting happened as some parents dropped off their kids.
“It’s very alarming and unsettling,” said Alyson Plumber. Parents were relieved after learning of an arrest.
“I’m comforted to know that they’re safe here,” said Plumber. “We were very fortunate that our director was on top of it.”