Landlord assaults couple in Pflugerville subletting dispute, police say

Tyrell Louis Higgins

Photo provided by Pflugerville Police Department

PFLUGERVILLE, Texas (KXAN) — A man faces a second-degree felony aggravated assault charge after police say he assaulted tenants he was subletting to, an affidavit says.

Tyrell Higgins, 31, is accused of punching a woman in the face and pointing a shotgun at a man after the couple arrived home in response to Higgins suddenly terminating their lease, the affidavit says.

The couple received a text from Higgins at 2:16 p.m. Saturday saying he was going to terminate their lease, the affidavit says. The couple had been living at the home in Pflugerville for two weeks, and Higgins was not just subletting to the pair, he was also their roommate, the affidavit says.

When the couple returned to the home, Higgins deadbolted the front door to keep them out, the affidavit says. When the man confronted Higgins at the front door, the affidavit says Higgins grabbed the man’s phone and threw it in the street. When the woman tried to enter the home, Higgins punched her in the face and she fell face-first into a pillar on the porch, the affidavit says.

The man went to hit Higgins after that, and Higgins pulled out a shotgun and pointed it at the man, the affidavit says. Higgins then hit the man in the head, the affidavit says.

Higgins told officers he was “defending his property because he could terminate their lease when he wanted to,” the affidavit says.

A witness next door to the house recorded part of the incident and said she saw a “long black gun,” the affidavit says. The witness’ video confirmed the physical altercation.

Officers searched the home and found a 12-gauge shotgun with a shell in the chamber with two in the magazine and the safety switched to off, the affidavit says.

Jail records show Higgins bonded out of Travis County Jail and is no longer in custody.

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