Former Police Officer, Wife Killed; Family Says Accidental - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

4/14/2008-Smith Co.

Former Police Officer, Wife Killed; Family Says Accidental

Late Monday morning we're told a man from out of town called authorities saying they needed to go to his brother's home on FM 2661. Officials found two bodies with apparent gunshot wounds. The deceased are 79 year old Johnny Kellis and his wife year 74 year old Gayle Frye.

KLTV 7 talked to several family members on the scene who said although the two had their problems she never would have believed it would come to this.

"We had a family member call us from out of town he was afraid a man and his wife had an altercation," said Sergeant Gary Middleton, Smith County Sheriff's Department.

Authorities came to the home the front door open and thinking someone was probably alive in the house

"Another family member met us at the house," said Middleton.

Authorities set a perimeter and tried to have the man's son talk him out. Over the P.A., and on the phone, but when that didn't work, they had to wait for the SWAT team.

"Once SWAT team arrived we deployed gas in the house," said Middleton.

Authorities are not saying why this happened. But earlier Johnny told his family it was an accident.

"He told his son that he was trying to load the gun and she was trying to take it away from him and it went off and it was an accident. But that the police would never believe him that it was an accident. And he couldn't take the chance. He didn't want to go to the penitentary," said Carol Shin, Johnny's Sister. 

The family says the couple had been together 8 years and fought off and on.

"Arguing and she would leave and then she'd come back," said Margaret Grimes, Johnny's Sister continued, "But this time."

His sister's say over 20 years ago, Johnny was a Jacksonville Police Officer. He had been driving trucks since, and was the oldest of 12 children.

"He call us when he needed us we were there. I guess he was trying to call me today," said Grimes. It was a missed call that this sister says would probably had ended the same way.

The family says Johnny had recently become depressed because of his health and doctors told him he didn't have long to live.

Danielle Capper, Reporting


Powered by Frankly