Hood County deputy dies of injuries suffered in Friday attack

Print
Email
|

by JIM DOUGLAS and DAVID SCHECHTER

WFAA

Posted on June 29, 2013 at 1:14 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jan 8 at 2:30 PM

GRANBURY, Texas — Hood County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Lance McLean, who was shot by a sexual assault suspect in Joshua on Friday, has died of his injuries, law enforcement sources confirmed to News 8 Saturday monrning.

McLean, 38, had been struck in the head and was taken to John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth following the attack.

The violence began with a disturbance call in Joshua at 10:50 a.m. Friday. Sheriff's deputies were dispatched near the intersection of Edgecliff Court and Lakeview Road. Upon arrival, a man identified as Ricky Don McCommas opened fire on the responding deputies, Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman Trooper Lonny Haschel said.

After McLean was injured, another deputy called for backup as McCommas, 57, drove to Granbury in a white van, Haschel said.

McCommas was killed by Granbury police near City Hall after wounding another police officer in a gun battle.

Late Friday afternoon, authorities surrounded the home of Ricky McCommas as they waited for a search warrant in Joshua. The McCommas family left the home earlier and authorities said they were taking precautions as they suspected explosives are inside the residence.

Law enforcement said McCommas sold guns from the home.

Once inside, authorities seized more than two dozen guns and about 20 cases of ammunition, along with a computer and other evidence.

Court records revealed McCommas had been charged with sexual assault of a child. Joshua Police Chief Annabeth Robertson said he was accused of raping his wife's niece on July 4, 2012 behind a grocery store. The chief said McCommas went to Granbury to confront the victim.

Court records show McCommas missed a court appearance Friday morning. A warrant for his arrest was issued and his bond raised from $100,000 to $200,000.

Granbury Police Department Chief Mitch Galvan said the wounded officer, identified as Chad Davis, was transported to Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital. He was alert and did not suffer life-threatening injuries. Department of Public Safety spokesman Trooper Lonny Haschel said he was shot in "an upper extremity."

According to Galvan, city police officers spotted the van near the 200 block of Houston Street at about 11:02 a.m.

McCommas exited his van on the east side of City Hall and opened fire with an assault-type rifle on the officers, striking one, the chief said.

Police returned fire and killed the man, Galvan added. The suspect was not correctly identified at an afternoon news conference, but Haschel later confirmed that the dead gunman was Ricky McCommas.

Haschel said he could not name the type of weapon used or the amount of shots fired because of the ongoing investigation.

"This is still unfolding, we still have folks at the scene," Haschel said Friday.

Witnesses Gary Farina and Joe Vandaveer said the suspect was wearing what appeared to be tactical gear. The two witnesses said the man looked at them as they stood near City Hall and then swung his rifle toward officers who had pulled in behind him. Farina said he then heard gunfire, although it was not clear who shot first.

"He got out of the van and three of us were standing there and then for a split second he looked at us and turned, and as soon as he turned, we started hearing gunfire," Farina said. "As soon as we heard the gunfire we turned and came to the back of the building."

At least one window at City Hall was hit during the shootout. No one was injured.

Officers placed at least 40 evidence markers along Houston Street near the intersection with Bridge Street.

An abandoned white van sat in a parking lot near an assault-type rifle, according to footage shot by HD Chopper 8. The body of the suspect was covered with a white sheet.

Granbury is about 41 miles southwest of Fort Worth.

Print
Email
|