MEXIA, TX - The widow of a Department of Public Safety Trooper killed in the line of duty is speaking out about her effort to make legislative changes.
On Thanksgiving Day 2017, DPS Trooper Damon Allen was fatally shot while on a traffic stop in Freestone County, TX.
Dabrett Black of Lindale was charged with his murder. Black had two prior run-ins with Smith County law enforcement and was out of jail on $15,000 bond when he allegedly shot and killed Trooper Allen.
Kasey Allen, Damon Allen's wife, described the night he was fatally wounded.
"They (DPS Officers) came to the house and told me what had happened… Everything else was just a daze," Allen said.
In her husband's honor, Kasey Allen is trying to make the most of everyday. She says she feels if Dabrett Black was given a higher bond, he wouldn't have been out of jail and subsequently her husband would still be alive.
After the Thanksgiving Day tragedy unfolded, Kasey Allen learned of Black's violent history with law enforcement. She said it made her feel very angry.
Kasey began discussions with Governor Greg Abbott's Office on how to prevent an incident like this from happening to another family. Over the past seven months, they've been working on drafting new legislation called the Damon Allen Bond Reform Act which normalizes bond amounts across Texas.
Kasey Allen says, "If you do a crime, it's going to be fair across the board. One person does it in one county, then the next person that does it… five counties over, it is going to be the same."
She knows socioeconomic status will remain a factor when issuing bonds because "it is just a constitutional right," in Allen's words. However, she wants criminal history to take more weight.
The Damon Allen Bond Reform Act is ready to be submitted to the Texas House of Representative where it will be voted on in the next legislative session.
"I feel pretty confident with what we have. I don't think we're asking for too much," said Allen.
Governor Gregg Abbott's Office will present the legislation in an August press conference in Austin.
Dabrett Black remains in the Limestone County Jail without bond.