By Mary Alys Cherry
While the holiday season is supposed to be a time of hope, love, peace and tranquility, residents of the normally safe Bay Area found themselves stunned over a string of violence that included the deaths of two area police officers just three days apart – Dec. 7 and 10 — and another reportedly having to kill a suspect Dec. 11, to possibly survive. Plus, a wife shot to death, reportedly by her husband.
Nassau Bay Police Sgt. Kaila Sullivan, 43, died after being hit by a car, driven by Tavores Dewayne Henderson, 21, in the 2000 block of San Sebastian Court Tuesday, Dec. 10, about 8:30 p.m. She was among a group of officers trying to handcuff Henderson, when he broke free and jumped into his vehicle, hitting Sullivan as he was driving away. She was pronounced dead after being rushed to HCA Houston Clear Lake Hospital in Webster, and Henderson remained on the run until the next day. He has been charged with Capital Murder.
Nassau Bay Police Chief Tim Cromie described Sullivan as a “cop’s cop” and a “cornerstone” of the 14-member police force.
Mayor Mark Denman said it was the first time an officer had been killed in the line of duty. “We have a very safe city,” he added.
Houston Police Sgt. Christopher Brewster, 32, was gunned down Saturday night, Dec. 7, as he was responding to a domestic violence call in Magnolia Park. Officers arrested Arturo Solis, 25, a few blocks away that night for his death and charged him with capital murder. Brewster was from the nearby Sagemont area and a graduate of Dobie High School. Services for both fallen officers were held at Grace Church on the Gulf Freeway.
A League City Police officer had to shoot and kill a suspect when he answered a disturbance call in the 6500 block of the residential neighborhood of Turner Fields about 4:45 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 11 after allegedly being assaulted by the suspect. The suspect, Matthew Jonathon Krupar, 31, was carried to HCA Clear Lake Hospital in Webster, where he was pronounced dead.
A League City Police Department spokesman said Patrol Officer Patrick Bradshaw first was greeted by a woman at the location, after which Krupar came out of the residence, confronted the officer and then became combative. It was during the ensuing altercation that Bradshaw shot Krupar. Officers and members of the League City EMS performed emergency medical assistance on the suspect before he was transported to the hospital.
The Galveston County Sheriff’s Department and the Galveston County District Attorney’s Office also were on scene and conducting the investigation. Bradshaw, who has served as a police officer with League City since 2008, will remain on administrative leave as policy dictates until he is released for duty.
Dudley Bernard, 40, of League City, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer, has been charged with his wife’s murder on Thanksgiving night and held on a $200,000 bond.
League City Police arrested him at 11:08 p.m. after responding to reports of multiple gunshots in the 2300 block of Indigo Harbour Lane, taking him into custody in the front yard of his residence without incident. His wife, Chauntelle Bernard, 42, a supervisory CBP officer, was found dead at the front door of the residence from gunshot wounds.
Bernard, who has been suspended by the CBP, where he has worked for the past 10 years, is accused of fatally shooting his wife several times shortly after guests left his home Thanksgiving night. League City Police found Chauntelle Bernard lying facedown in the foyer of the home after Dudley called 911 to report the shooting. He reportedly told police he had “accidentally” shot his wife.
Their two sons were also at the home at the time of the shooting as was the wife’s sister, who had been visiting them.