An off-duty New Orleans police detective was fatally shot by gunmen during a botched robbery at a Houston restaurant, authorities said.
Det. Everett Briscoe, a 13-year New Orleans police department vet, was killed in the patio area of Houston’s Grotto Ristorante Saturday afternoon when two armed men demanded diners to hand over their belongings.
A second man was also shot and critically wounded, Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said.
“I want to talk to Houston today, and everybody that lives in Houston,” an angry Finner told reporters. “We better than this. And I’m not going to let … a few little thugs tear down our city.”
Finner called on the public to identify the gunmen who killed Briscoe as he was vacationing in Houston. The 41-year-old married father of two was having dinner in an outdoor patio area when two armed suspects approached and demanded property from customers, Finner said.
Witnesses said the diners compiled, but one of the suspects opened fire, striking Briscoe and another man. The suspects then fled in a silver or gray Nissan Altima with a paper license plate without making off with anything, Finner said.
“Right now, I’m damn mad,” the chief said Saturday. “It makes no sense.”
Surveillance photos released late Saturday showed two black suspects in hoods. A $10,000 reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest, the Houston Chronicle reported. No suspects were in custody as of early Monday, a Houston police spokesman told The Post.
The second victim was identified as Dyrin Riculfy, 43, who was also visiting Houston on a trip with fellow members of the New Orleans-based Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club, NOLA.com reported.
Riculfy, a 43-year-old owner of a party bus and tuxedo rental company, was reportedly fighting for his life Sunday.
“Having to inform [Briscoe’s widow] and two sons that their father and husband weren’t coming home because of senseless violence is … difficult,” NOPD Superintendent Shaun Ferguson told reporters. “We lost a good one.”
Detectives spent hours at the restaurant late Saturday, but the scene had largely returned to normal by Sunday brunch, NOLA.com reported.
“For something like that to happen was very unexpected,” said security guard Darryl O’Neal, who wasn’t working at the restaurant during the shooting.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact Houston police at (713) 308-3600.