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Incident at 7600 Fannin

April 17, 2007 - Charges have been filed against a suspect arrested in an incident at 7600 Fannin about 1:30 a.m. on Thursday (April 12).

The suspect, William Lewis (w/m, DOB: 10/25/76), is charged with endangering a child in the 180th State District Court.

HPD Homicide Division Sergeant J.R. McGalin and Officer C.T. Hufstedler reported:

Lewis was visiting his wife and newborn child when he decided to take the baby and walk the hallway. Hospital personnel asked Lewis why he was walking with the baby in the hallway and added he could only do so in the room or nursery area. After becoming upset with hospital personnel, Lewis returned to the room and later walked out again with the baby, and immediately headed to the elevator. The security system activated, which then deactivated the elevator. Hospital personnel again asked Lewis why he was taking the baby, told him he could not leave and reminded him of procedures and policies that needed to be followed. Lewis became belligerent and told hospital personnel that he was taking the baby and if they tried to stop him there would be a hostage situation. Two off- duty officers working security at the hospital were called to the floor and alerted of the incident. When the officers arrived, Lewis was holding the baby and began to yell and threaten the officers. Everyone attempted to convince Lewis to hand over the baby but he refused and became more aggressive and loud, and told everyone he was leaving the hospital with the baby. At the same time, officers heard a female, later identified as the baby’s mother, yelling that Lewis was trying to take her baby. Officers were not aware at the time that Lewis was the father of the newborn.

At the time, officers feared that Lewis was attempting to kidnap the child and that his aggression would harm the baby. The officers planned how they could take the baby from Lewis without causing any harm to the infant. Because of the risk Lewis posed to the baby and officers, along with his aggressiveness, one officer deployed his Taser on Lewis as the other attempted to take the baby. Officers used extreme caution to ensure the Taser was deployed on the opposite side of the suspect’s body from the side the baby was located. Additionally, when being trained with the Taser, officers are taught that the voltage is not transferred from one person to another. Therefore, the child would be unaffected by the device. The baby, wrapped in a swaddle, fell about two feet to the floor. Hospital personnel quickly took the baby for observation and determined the baby appeared to be fine, with further tests being conducted. Officers struggled to place Lewis into custody since he was still not complying with their commands.

It was learned through a police report made the week prior, the father reportedly made threats against the baby’s mother and her unborn child’s lives.

GO/JFC/JRM 4-17-07
Inc #052685107

For additional information, please contact the HPD Public Affairs Division at 713-308-3200.