Official: 2 sheriff’s deputies killed in central Texas town

Lights atop a police cruiser flash at the scene of a crime in this undated file image.
Lights atop a police cruiser flash at the scene of a crime in this undated file image. (KPRC/File)

EDEN, Texas – A man shot two West Texas sheriff's deputies dead and critically wounded a city employee answering a dog complaint, authorities said Tuesday.

Sgt. Justin Baker of the Texas Department of Public Safety said the suspect was taken into custody after Monday night's attack in Eden, a town of about 1,300 people roughly 210 miles (338 kilometers) southwest of Dallas.

Jeffrey Nicholas, 28, has been booked into Tom Green County Jail in nearby San Angelo with a bond set at $4 million and charged with capital murder of a peace officer. No attorney for Nicholas was listed in jail records.

The two Concho County sheriff's deputies and a city employee arrived at the home shortly after 8:40 p.m., Baker said. While making contact with people at the residence, “an altercation occurred and quickly escalated to gunfire,” he said.

The Lubbock Police Department said in a statement that it was “heartbroken” to learn of the deaths and that its officers on Tuesday would escort the deputies’ bodies to a forensics lab in Lubbock, which is about 200 miles (322 kilometers) northwest of Eden.

Gov. Greg Abbott said in a statement that “our hearts are broken.”

“This terrible loss is a solemn reminder of the risks our brave law enforcement officers face while protecting our communities,” Abbott said.