ALTO, TX (KTRE) - The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said they are searching for a suspect after a couple in Alto were assaulted at their home.
According to the sheriff’s office, at approximately 7:30 p.m. Saturday, deputies received a call for service involving an assault that had occurred on a County Road off of FM 1911 south of Alto.
Judy Williams and her husband told authorities that they heard an alarm on their property go off and Judy went outside to see what had triggered the alarm.
“We’re sitting there watching TV, and the back light come on and the buzzer went off, and I just went out there expecting to see some animal of some sort,” said Judy Williams. “I started walking around 20 ft. away from the back door when a tall, thin guy come running from the back of the garage grabbed me and slammed me into the ground face down.”
Williams said the man started attacking her, beating her over the head with what she believed was a rock. When she screamed out, her husband Jean ran outside and the suspect turned his attention to him. Judy said she ran inside her home and grabbed the couple’s gun and fired in the direction of the suspect.
“I come out and just started shooting, and he ran.” Williams recalled.
Authorities said the suspect then ran from the property. Williams called 911, and first responders arrived soon after to take them both to the hospital.
“I have several minor bruises and cuts and stuff, in my hand I had on my head,” Williams explained. “I have several staples in the back of my head where he [hit]. I never did lose consciousness, but a lot of blood.”
Williams did not specify how badly her husband was hurt, but Jean’s doctors believe he will lose his left eye. Adding to that, Williams said, is the emotional damage the attack caused.
“It’s scary to go home and lay in the bed, or sit there after dark, it’s just a scary thing,” Williams said. “I don’t know why he targeted us, we’re just a house.”
Authorities began searching the area Saturday night but were unable to find the suspect. The sheriff’s office was assisted at the scene by Alto Police Department and Wells Police Department.
While the search continues, Williams said the support she and her husband are receiving from her church community will help in their recovery.
“First Baptist in Alto has been wonderful,” Williams said. “We had so many visits yesterday, and people have written cards... they’ve got to bring food out for a few days, and just so many prayers are going up. It’s just wonderful, it’s just a blessing.”
Anyone with information in this case is urged to contact the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office at 903-683-2271. A private group in Alto is offering a reward for any information leading to the identity of the suspect in this case. The Cherokee County Crime Stoppers is also offering a reward and can be reached at 903-586-7867 (STOP).