The HGTV host jumped at the chance to take part in a police ride-along with friend Bryan Segal, a former police officer and current star of El Moussa’s new makeover show, Chi-Town Flip. The two met at a real estate seminar hosted by El Moussa and his ex Christina and made a big impression on the famous flippers, who began mentoring Segal and his wife, Maira.
“He reached out to me after the event and we got to know each other and he took me on a ride along in South Central L.A.,” El Moussa says of their most memorable early meeting. On the day of the ride, he recalls, “ gets in the car and he’s in a bullet-proof vest and gun and I’m sitting there in jeans and a T-shirt thinking, huh. I was like ‘Hey what if they shoot at the car?’ He says that the doors are bulletproof. I said, ‘Well, what about the windows?’ He said, ‘duck.’”
WATCH THIS: Tarek El Moussa’s Gun Incident Was a Turning Point for Then-Wife Christina
Lucky for the father of two, no shots were fired during his ride. But he and Segal did find themselves in a shocking situation: “There was a car chase,” says El Moussa. At one point, when the officers on the scene jumped out of their cars, he says, “I noticed that all the police officers parked their cars but they don’t stand near the cars. They all stand away from the cars.” When he asked his chaperone what was behind the behavior, he recalls that Segal replied casually, “Well, they usually shoot at the cars.”
El Moussa seems to have kept his cool during the stand off. “I’m standing with all these guys with all their police gear thinking, man I hope they don’t shoot at us,” he says. “It was a lot of fun. I had a great time.”
The TV personality and cancer survivor has had a tumultuous year. He separated from wife of seven years and Flip or Flop costar, Christina, in December, after an incident involving a handgun. He’s since moved into a new bachelor pad and, he says, is focussing on fatherhood.
His first production project, Chi-Town Flip, which he’s co-executive producing with Christina, debuts August 6 at 2pm on HGTV.