Suspect denies assaulting deputy to grandmother - KLTV.com - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Suspect denies assaulting deputy to grandmother

TITUS COUNTY, TX (KLTV) - An East Texas deputy shoots a burglary suspect after authorities say the suspect tried to take the deputy's gun away.

Authorities say 26-year-old James Myers was shot in the right leg during a brief struggle.

This happened after a deputy chased Myers into a wooded area when he was trying to serve an arrest warrant out of Cass County.

Myers' grandmother says she's talked to her grandson and he tells her a very different story.

"I asked him did you choke the policeman? Did you wrestle with the policeman in the ravine? He said Mimi, I did not fight the police, I did not fight them. I ran from them, yes. I did not fight the police. So, what do I do?" said Elaine Myers, James' grandmother.

Elaine Myers has raised her grandson since he was in fourth grade, and believes him when he says he did not assault a deputy. She says the version of the story James told her is much different than what authorities are saying.

"He was running, and this officer was chasing him. James turned around and put his hands out like they wanted to cuff him and the officer shot him in the leg and the officer said to James, I thought you had a gun," she said.

Titus County Sheriff Tim Ingram says James was hiding out at a home just north of Cookeville when deputies tried to make an arrest. He says James bolted for the woods, and the deputy gave chase.

"He went for my deputy's gun," said Ingram. "The deputy was able to keep him from grabbing the pistol, but while that was going on and all the confusion and the fight, he [James Myers] slipped around and got on my deputy's back and was trying to put him in a choke hold. So, that's when my deputy just went ahead and draw his weapon and shot Myers."

Authorities rolled out evidence they collected from the scene: two stolen guns and a flat screen TV. Ingram says his deputy made a split second decision to protect his life.

"The report given by the deputy matching the evidence, everything matches. So, yea it's a clean shooting. In my opinion it was justifiable," said Ingram.

"Yes, he was wrong for running, but believe me they didn't have to shoot him," said Elaine Myers.

Now, the Texas Rangers will have the final say if this shooting followed protocol.

Sheriff Ingram says the bullet fired by the deputy grazed the side of the deputy's body during the struggle. He was not badly hurt. Right now, Myers is being held in the Titus County jail.

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