SAN MARCOS, Texas -- Police shot a man in Hays County after he kidnapped his ex-girlfriend, stole a police car and led them on a high speed chase.
The ordeal lasted two and a half hours, involved seven different police agencies and spanned three counties.
The chase started in Bulverde overnight and ended about 40 miles later in Hays County. Police said the suspect drove by the mall several times with lots of people out shopping for Black Friday. While the victim was physically OK, police said they had to kill the suspect to save her life.
"About 2:00 last night I woke up to red flashing lights, somebody knocked on my door and told me to stay inside," said James Schoen, who lives near where the chase occurred.
The chase ended practically in Shoen's front yard.
"The cruiser he stole was here, the other cruiser was over there," he said, pointing out locations.
Around 1:30 am a 22-year-old man kidnapped his 19-year-old ex-girlfriend at gunpoint from the Bealls in Bulverde where she worked.
When confronted, the man started shooting at the officer, then pushed the woman into the cop's squad car and took off.
A high speed pursuit came through the Hill Country, past Canyon Lake, into Hays County and then to San Marcos. Police spiked his tires and said he drove about 10 miles with two tires blown out.
"At that time we went from a kidnapping abduction to a barricaded hostage system," said Hays County Sheriff Gary Cutler.
The chase ended at Highway 21 and Highway 2001 in Hays County. Police tried to negotiate with the suspect for about 30 minutes but he threatened to kill the hostage. They shot him twice in the head and he died on scene.
"[He] said he was going to kill the girl. They decided 'well, we're not going to stand by and let you do that,'" said San Marcos Police Chief Howard Williams.
Williams said the danger stretched even beyond the hostage situation.
"He went by the malls here in San Marcos twice in the course of this pursuit. We're very lucky he didn't run over somebody and kill somebody," said Williams.
"It feels like something you would only see in a movie. It was like a nightmare," said a woman who works nearby.
Police also tell us the suspect had a history of violent crimes.