SAN ANTONIO — Hannah Westall was shot and killed by a San Antonio Police officer last week after police say she pulled out what looked like a gun.
Jason Hill, a local author, knew Westall. He actually wrote about her a couple of years ago in his second book, "Prospect Hill."
Police say the 26-year-old was shot after she ignored an officer's commands and pulled out what looked like a an Uzi submachine gun. Police later found it was a fake, only a replica.
The shooting unfolded in the shopping center parking lot of Huebner and Vance Jackson.
"I did not expect this," Hill said. "I think she is an example of a young woman who fell through the cracks."
Hill said he met Westall in 2016, not knowing she was homeless too. Hill was a homeless veteran who served in the Navy and said Westall told him about a place to stay that night, which ended up helping him out.
He was so moved by their conversation that, months later, he wrote about their encounter in his second published book.
Hill only saw her one other time. He lost contact and found out about his friend's recent death by watching the news.
"I won't say there is no one at fault," he said. "She put herself in that situation, unfortunately, but she was a real person."
He said he doesn't know what led to Westall losing her life, but Hill wants others to pay attention to those who are often forgotten.
"There is always a deeper story," he said. "And she was a real person. And her life had value. I just would like people to remember that next time they turn on their news and they see someone died."
This incident is the sixth confirmed SAPD officer-involved shooting in 2019. There were 11 in all of 2018, 12 in 2017 and 13 in 2016.