Grand jury returns 'no bill' in the case of a man who killed a deputy

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by Brad Woodard / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on February 6, 2014 at 11:28 PM

WASHINGTON COUNTY, Texas -- It was a move, which on at least some levels seemed to defy logic, serving a no-knock search warrant in the darkness just before sunrise.

“All of a sudden they hear a boom outside, like somebody is trying to kick in the door,” said defense attorney Dick DeGuerin.

They were Henry Magee and his pregnant girlfriend, both sleeping at the time. On the other side of the door, the Burleson County Sheriff’s Office and Deputy Adam Sowders, acting on a tip from an informant that Magee was growing large amounts of marijuana and in possession of stolen weapons.

“It’s pitch black outside, and a man came in with a gun, and he shot him. It was as simple as that,” said DeGuerin.

The case turned out to be anything but simple. Sowders was laid to rest in December, and Magee charged in his death, but that all changed when a grand jury declined to indict him for murder.

“If you’re awakened at five in the morning by somebody trying to beat your door down, and they don’t say they’re the police what are you going to do? A lot of people keep guns in their homes for just that reason,” said DeGuerin.

Prosecutors said the deputies didn’t do anything wrong, but under state law, neither did Magee. They said they will still prosecute him on drug charges for the two marijuana plants they found in his home.

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