Police officers stand behind crime scene tape.
Photo by Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty

Texas candidate’s office shot in apparent racial attack


Five people were taken into custody and questioned late Monday in connection with the apparent racially motivated shooting at a Texas campaign office, police said.

Zena Stephens, who is African-American and a university police chief, is seeking the Democratic nomination to run for the role of sheriff in Jefferson County.

Stephens told NBC News that she was standing outside her campaign headquarters in Beaumont, Texas, when a white male in a white Jeep pulled up and shouted “f*** the n*****s.” Seconds later, a shot shattered the glass door of the building.

No one was hit or injured. There were about 25 people inside the building and five or six outside the office, Stephens said.

“Anytime something like that happens with innocent people around you’re concerned for them,” Stephens said. “I don’t know if it was a random act or whether it was targeted, but I just think it is, you know, ignorance.”

She said the shooting was “more shocking and scary” because she had loved ones in the building, including her father, mother and niece.

The campaign had not received any previous threats.

Beaumont Police Sgt. Cody Guedry confirmed Stephens’ account and said that five people had been questioned.

Two weapons were located inside the vehicle. One was a BB-style gun, and another was a low-caliber rifle, Guedry added.

Stephens is currently Prairieview A&M University Police Chief. 

This story first appeared on NBCNews.com.



Texas candidate's office shot in apparent racial attack