1 dead, 13 injured after man crashes truck into Texas Department of Public Safety building

One person was killed and 13 others were injured when a man driving a stolen 18-wheeler truck fleeing officers crashed into a Texas Department of Public Safety building on Friday in what officials said was a deliberate act.

The law enforcement officers followed the truck when they recognized it had been reported as stolen Friday morning. During the chase, the driver "took a hard right" and crashed at about 10:30 a.m. into the Brenham, Texas, building, which conducts drivers license operations, Sgt. Justin Ruiz said at a news conference.

The suspect, identified as 42-year-old Clenard Parker of Chappel Hill, Texas, had been denied a commercial drivers license at the same location the day before, Ruiz said. Parker was taken into custody without injury and faces multiple felony charges.

"We will prosecute this person to the full extent of the law because this will not be tolerated, not in my home town and not in our home state," Texas state Senator Lois Kolkhorst said.

Three people were life-flighted to hospitals with critical injuries, one of whom later died. Three others were taken to local hospitals and released. Eight others were treated at the scene and released. The identities of the victims have not been released.

Mayor Atwood Kenjura said the driver drove into the building, backed up, and was preparing to drive into it again before he was apprehended. If he had struck the building again, Kenjura said, it likely would have collapsed and caused more injuries or deaths.

"Please stay clear of the area as investigators and medical personnel respond to the area," the DPS Southeast Texas Region office said in a social media post earlier Friday.

Images from the scene published by local news outlets showed significant damage to the DPS building and a hole at the building's entrance. Amid debris scattered in front of it, is a large semi-truck with a loaded flatbed and damage to its cab.

"Thank you to the brave law enforcement officers and first responders currently on the scene," Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives Dade Phelan said in a post on X. "Please keep those injured today in your prayers as they recover."

USA TODAY has requested more information from the Department of Public Safety and Brenham authorities. The Brenham police and fire departments declined to comment.

Brenham, Texas, is a city in east-central Texas with over 18,000 residents about 75 miles outside of Houston.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Man crashes truck into Brenham, Texas, Department of Public Safety