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House of Coleman
901 West Alabama • Houston 77006 • (713) 523-2521
KILLED BY POLICE
Edited by Breakthrough from an article
by Craig P. Rowland. This article was reprinted with the permission of Upfront
Frederick William Paez, 27, Secretary for
the Houston Gay Political Caucus, was
shot and killed early Saturday morning,
June 28, by Houston Police Officer K.M.
McCoy. Along with a raid on Mary's
Lounge during which 61 were arrested
only a week earlier the killing has seriously damaged relations between the police
department and the gay community.
Paez, a bus driver, was shot in the back
of the head while in the presence of two
off-duty officers in the 2400 block of
Capitol. The police report of the incident
reads as follows:
"This morning [June 28] at approximately 2:30 a.m., 2400 Capitol street at
the Best Delivery Service, Officer K.M.
McCoy along with Officer S.A. Cain were
outside the building as Officer McCoy
was working an Extra Job at this location
and Officer Cain had come by to visit.
Both Officers were off duty and dressed
in blue uniform trousers and white tee
shirts. They work Central Patrol second
"While outside a Black Cadillac drove
by several times and then stopped and a
white Male engaged the Officers in a conversation. After a short while the Officers
along with this WM who was later identified as Frederick William Paez, 27 years
of age and a Bus Driver, all went to the
side of the building at the suggestion of
Mr. Paez and upon arriving there Mr. Paez
then approached Officer McCoy and
touched Him between His legs.
"After the WM touched the Officer,
the Officer pulled His Police identification and told the WM that He was a
Police Officer and that the subject was
under arrest. Officers had intended to
arrest this subject and charge Him with
Public Lewdness. After the Officer had
told the WM he was under arrest. He
backed away from the Officer and the
Officer reached and took this WM and
turned Him toward a vehicle parked there
and had Him put His hands on this vehicle so that a search could be made of the
WM's person and at that time the Officer
had His pistol in His hand and the arrested subject reached back and grabbed the
gun and after a short struggle the pistol
discharged striking the arrested subject in
the upper portion of the rear of his head
on the left side.
Mr. Paez was taken to Ben Taub Hospital where He expired at 3:20 a.m. this
The single gunshot was fired from
Officer McCoy's 45 Automatic Pistol.
Officer S.A. Cain was near but was not
involved in the actual shooting as Officer
McCoy was holding the pistol.
This preliminary investigation by the
• BY CRAIG P.ROWLAND-
Homicide Division at this moment indicates that the Officer's weapon discharged accidently as He was trying to
arrest Mr. Paez and Mr. Paez resisted.
The investigation is continuing by the
Homicide Division of this Department,
the Internal Affairs Division of this Department and the Civil Rights Division of
the Harris County District Attorney's
Prepared by Det. W.L. Young
To investigate the circumstances surrounding the death, the gay community
elected a 5-member task force consisting
of Sue Cummings, Debra Danburg, Lee
Harrington, Ray Hill, and James Kuhn. It
is anticipated that the need for the committee could continue for several years.
The committee acquired the consultation of Arthur B. Alphin, a firearms expert, for the press conference held Tuesday, July 1 at Metropolitan Church of the
Resurrection (MCCR). Alphin, who has
over 20 years experience with firearms,
demonstrated the functions of a .45 automatic handgun, the type used in the killing. During his demonstration Alphin
said, "This weapon does not go off accidentally." He continued, "To load this
weapon and point it at a human being
with the safety off constitutes a high disregard for the life of that person."
Alphin was not necessarily suggesting
intent to kill, but that there was a high
degree of negligence on the part of the
officer. Officer McCoy has been suspended from duty pending the outcome of
On Tuesday evening, July 8, a memorial service was held for Paez at MCCR.
According to MCCR Rev. Chuck Larsen,
about 350 attended the Episcopal service.
Although Paez was a member of Christ
Cathedral, he "attended MCCR services
fairly regularly. The funeral itself was
closed to the public by family request.
Religious leaders of various denominations spoke, and letters were read from
Congressman Mickey Leland, the Metropolitan Community Churches in Dallas
and Los Angeles, Universal Fellowship
Offices, Washington, DC, and from
Metropolitan Community Church founder
Rev. Troy D. Perry.
Over $600 was collected for the Fred
Paez Memorial Fund, established as a
scholarship fund to aid a lesbian or gay
man interested in working in law enforcement. Donations may be mailed to the
Fred Paez Memorial Fund, Houston Gay
Political Caucus, PO Box 3887, Houston,
Officials who have expressed their support of a thorough investigation of the
case include City Councilpersons Eleanor
Tinsley, Lance Lalor, and Dale Gor-
czynski, as well as City Controller Kathy
Whitmire. At the rally following the gay
pride parade Sunday, June 29, Tinsley
said that she expected an investigation to
be conducted to the satisfaction of the