A Texas police sergeant who was killed while trying to arrest a suspect during a traffic stop was remembered as a ‘model employee’ and a loving mother at her funeral on Monday.
Nassau Bay police sergeant Kaila Sullivan, 43, was trying to arrest Tavores Henderson last week for an outstanding warrant for assault when he broke free.
Authorities allege Henderson fled in his vehicle and struck Sullivan, running over her and dragging her body on December 10. She later died at a hospital.
The funeral of Texas police sergeant Kaila Sullivan, who was killed while trying to arrest a suspect during a traffic stop, took place on Monday. Her brother Jared is pictured speaking at her service as an image of her is projected on a big screen
Kaden Senter, (left), son of Police Sgt. Kaila Sullivan, and her wife, Tracey Sullivan, (right), hold hands as they are escorted into Grace Church Houston for her funeral
Sullivan, (left), was trying to arrest Tavores Henderson, (right), last week for an outstanding warrant for assault when he broke free
Henderson, 21, was arrested on Thursday following a nearly two-day search by authorities. Sheriff´s office investigators said Henderson gave a full confession after his arrest.
Sullivan´s funeral service took place at 10am Wednesday at Grace Church Houston. It is the same church where the funeral service was held on Thursday for Houston police Sgt. Christopher Brewster, 32.
He was killed on December 7 while responding to a domestic violence call. During the funeral service, the slain officer’s brother Jared recalled how she taught him valuable lessons which he used during his own military service.
‘But most importantly, she taught us how to love. This world needs more people like Sgt. Kaila Sullivan,’ KPRC-TV reported him as saying.
Sullivan’s son Kaden and her wife, Tracey Sullivan, right, held hands and looked devastated as they were escorted into the church sanctuary for the funeral.
Nassau Bay police Chief Tim Cromie described Sullivan as a dedicated police officer, who was a 16-year veteran of the Nassau Bay Police Department.
He claimed she served as a defensive tactic instructor and was also studying to get a masters’ degree in psychology.
Speaking during the service, Nassau Bay Mayor Mark Denman said: ‘Kaila was one of the best. She was a peace officer’s peace officer.
‘Her memory is forever seared in our hearts,’ Denman added.
Nassau Bay Police Chief Tim Cromie speaks during the funeral of Sgt. Kaila Sullivan at Grace Church Houston Wednesday and called her an ‘exemplary officer’
Mourners hug each other after arriving for the funeral of Nassau Bay Police Sgt. Kaila Sullivan at Grace Church Houston Wednesday
Police honor guard members stand at the casket of Nassau Bay Police Sgt. Kaila Sullivan before her funeral at Grace Church Houston
He described her as a model employee and exemplary officer, and the force was coming up with ways of setting up a memorial in her honor.
A chaplain read messages from her family, including from her mother who spoke of her Irish heritage, the love she had for her son, and of her love of camping.
Following the service, law enforcement gathered outside Grace Church where the rendering of honors occurred for Sgt. Sullivan.
Musicians played Amazing Grace using bagpipes as a flag was given to her family by Nassau Bay police Chief Tim Cromie.
The sergeant’s funeral came as law enforcement agencies and police unions expressed anger the suspect charged in her death was initially given a bond following his arrest.
Following the service, law enforcement gathered outside Grace Church where the rendering of honors occurred for Sgt. Sullivan
Members of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard stand as the casket carrying the body of Nassau Bay Police Department Sgt. Kaila Sullivan is carried into the church on Wednesday morning
That bond was later revoked as the charge was upgraded to capital murder.
Henderson´s mother and her boyfriend have each been charged with hindering apprehension for allegedly helping Henderson flee authorities.
Prosecutors also filed charges against Henderson´s mother, Tiffany Henderson, 37, and her boyfriend, Geoffrey Wheeler, 33, who are accused of helping Henderson flee authorities by picking him up near the scene of Sullivan´s death and hiding him in a hotel.
His mother is also accused of lying to deputies about her son´s whereabouts. Both Tiffany Henderson and Wheeler were each charged with hindering apprehension, a felony. Court records did not list attorneys for them.
Motorcyclists arrive to the funeral of Nassau Bay Police Department Sgt. Kaila Sullivan to pay the respects. The funeral service heard that Sullivan was a member of a motorcycle club
Pallbearers unload the casket containing the body of Nassau Bay Police Department Sgt. Kaila Sullivan at Grace Church Houston
When he was arrested, Henderson was initially charged with felony murder and a magistrate judge had set his bond at $150,000.
Local law enforcement agencies, as well as Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, expressed anger Henderson had been granted a bond.
In a statement, the Texas Municipal Police Association – the state´s largest law enforcement association – called the initial bond given Henderson “an insult to every member of law enforcement and the good citizens we are charged with protecting.”
The Harris County District Attorney´s Office said Friday there was never any chance Henderson would have been released from jail as his bond on another assault charge he is facing had been revoked, which meant he could not be released.
Authorities allege Henderson fled in his vehicle and struck Sullivan, running over her and dragging her body on December 10. She later died at a hospital
Tavores Henderson, 21, was taken into custody in Houston on Thursday and charged with capital murder in the death of 43-year-old Nassau Bay police Sgt. Kaila Sullivan. He was detained using Sullivan’s own handcuffs
When prosecutors upgraded the charge to capital murder, they asked that he be held without bond and that request was granted, said Dane Schiller, a spokesman for the district attorney´s office.
‘He is not going anywhere but a cell or courtroom, where he faces the possibility of life in prison or a death sentence,’ Schiller said.
Nassau Bay is located about 25 miles southeast of Houston and has about 4,000 residents.
Sullivan, 43, was approaching her 16-year anniversary with the Nassau Bay Police Department when she was killed.
Nassau Bay Police Chief Tim Cromie said she was ‘a consummate professional in police work.’
Henderson´s arrest came on the same day as the funeral for Houston police Sgt. Christopher Brewster, 32, who was fatally shot on Saturday while responding to a domestic violence call.
According to court records, the misdemeanor arrest warrant Henderson had been wanted on was for an alleged assault of his ex-girlfriend. Authorities say Henderson grabbed and scratched her as he tried to kidnap her Sunday.
Henderson was also accused of choking his ex-girlfriend and threatening to shoot her in November 2018, leading to a felony aggravated assault-family member charge, which he had been free on bond at the time of Sullivan´s death.
Henderson is a Houston rapper who performs under the stage name Killah Dre.