Man Arrested With Guns, Ammo at Hyatt Regency in Houston on NYE

By Faye Higbee

Russell Lawrence Ziemba, 49, was staying on the 28th floor of Houston’s Hyatt Regency Hotel. He had too much to drink at the hotel bar at around 1:30 a.m., and when they tried to escort him back to his room, he became  “belligerent” and decided to fight with security guards. Police were called as backup. When they arrived to the man’s room, they noticed ammunition.

When police began to check out the man’s belongings,  they found an AR-15, a handgun, and a shotgun along with a “limited amount of ammunition.” He was charged with assaulting a peace officer, and trespassing.

Russell Ziemba- previous mugshot

Police concluded after their interview that based on a limited amount of ammo, there was “no criminal intent.” He made no threats, according to the Houston Chronicle.  Ziemba had brought the guns, all of which were legally purchased, into his room for “safekeeping.”

“Not an arsenal”

Police made it very clear that this did NOT appear to be a Las Vegas style situation. The amount of weapons and ammo was low, nothing like the killer in Las Vegas. Ziemba’s truck has been towed.

The hotel holds a massive four floor NYE celebration with 50,000 ballons being dropped. Fortunately, Houston had already tightened security.

“The safety and security of our guests and colleagues is our top priority, and consistent with the hotel’s prepared security plans, heightened measures are in place on New Year’s Eve. We are fully cooperating with authorities on an investigation, and further questions should be directed to the Houston Police Department.” Tom Netting, hotel manager