Texas Sheriff Slams Out-of-Control Rhetoric Against Police After 'Cold-Blooded Assassination' at Gas Station
Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman addressed a press conference Saturday afternoon seeking answers on the “execution-style” killing of Deputy Darren Goforth, who was allegedly shot from behind by murder suspect Shannon J. Miles at a Texas gas station.
Sheriff Hickman not only updated the media on the status of the investigation, he slammed incendiary rhetoric for leading to unprovoked murders of police officers.
After explaining that his investigation will proceed in methodical fashion, he said:
“So, at any point when the rhetoric ramps up to the point where calculated, cold-blooded assassination of police officers happen, this rhetoric has gotten out-of-control.”
Hickman then had a suggestion on how to decompress the charged language, asking pointedly:
'We've heard black lives matter, all lives matter - well, cops' lives matter too. So, why don't we just drop the qualifier and say 'lives matter'?"
The criminal investigation has led to the apprehension of Shannon Miles, who allegedly not only shot Goforth in the head as the officer pumped gas into his cruiser at a Chevron station just before 8:30 p.m. on Friday night, but continued to unload bullets into the officer's body.
“I have been in law enforcement 45 years,” Sheriff Hickman said of the shooting. “I don't recall another incident this cold-blooded and cowardly.”
The suspect was tracked down after investigation of surveillance tape of the shooting, and ballistics evidence was matched to Miles, according to police.
Sheriff Hickman would only state publicly of the weapon used in the murder that it was “a big gun ... a handgun.”
Shannon Miles is currently in Harris County jail and is scheduled to be arraigned on Monday. Miles now faces capital murder charges.
As CNN reported, Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman said Miles has a criminal history that includes: “charges of resisting arrest, trespassing, evading detention and disorderly conduct with a firearm.”
The sheriff also provided further details on the investigation:
Deputy Darren Goforth, a 47-year-old father, leaves behind two children, ages 5 and 12, as a community and a nation mourn his loss.