BELL COUNTY (April 7, 2012)—An off-duty Rogers police officer was shot in the chest early Friday afternoon outside a rural Bell County residence after confronting the estranged husband of a woman he had accompanied to the home to retrieve personal property, the Bell County Sheriff’s Office said Saturday.
The officer, whose name was not released Saturday, returned fire and wounded the gunman, who was also injured, authorities said.
Both men were taken to Scott & White Hospital in Temple, one by ambulance and the other by helicopter.
The suspected gunman, whom authorities identified Saturday as Richard J. Breuer, 41, has been charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon (family violence), authorities said.
The officer and Breuer’s estranged wife drove a pickup truck to the home in the 19000 block of FM 485 so the woman could retrieve property from the residence, authorities said.
She told authorities her estranged husband had told her he was out of town, but when she entered the home she said he attacked her, grabbing her by the hair, dragging her into the living room and threatening to kill her, the sheriff’s office said.
The officer, who was waiting in the truck, heard her screams, approached the front door of the house, identified himself as a police officer and ordered the man, who was armed with a pistol, to drop his gun.
The man then opened fire, shooting repeatedly at the officer, who was struck at least once in the chest, authorities said.
The officer fell to the ground in the front yard of the home, but the man continued to approach him with the gun pointed at him authorities said.
At that point, authorities said, the officer fired, striking the gunman.
The woman helped the wounded officer into the truck and as she began to drive off, the gunman opened fire on the pickup, authorities said.
Investigators later found a bullet hole in the windshield of the truck, but neither the woman nor the officer was struck by the shots fired as they fled.
Bell County Sheriff's Deputy James Lewing said the woman drove to the side of the road across from Green's Sausage House where an ambulance was parked, evidently while the crew was eating and called for help.
The shootings were reported just after 12:15 p.m. Friday and deputies found the two victims as they arrived at the two locations.
The complaint against Breuer was filed Friday night.
Texas Rangers are assisting in the investigation, authorities said.
Information about the conditions of the two shooting victims wasn’t released Saturday.