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Deputy Murder Suspect Says It Was Self Defense

By: Clay Falls and Associated Press Email
By: Clay Falls and Associated Press Email
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  • Sgt. Sowders killed December 19th.
  • Magee thought he was the victim of home invasion.
  • High profile attorney Dick DeGuerrin representing Magee.

HOUSTON, Texas - The defense attorney for a man charged with the capital murder of a Burleson County Sheriff's Deputy claims the shooting was in self dense.

28-year-old Henry Magee was arrested last week, accused of opening fire on deputies who were executing a search warrant at his mobile home in Burleson County.

News 3 spoke with Defense Attorney Dick DeGuerin about what his client claims happened.

Now we know what they were looking for.

Henry Magee's attorney says the eight Burleson County Sheriff's Deputies were serving a search warrant for drugs without warning and says his client thought he was shooting a robber breaking in.

Questions still linger on how 31-year-old Deputy Sergeant Investigator Adam Sowders was shot.

He died after serving a search warrant at a mobile home on County Road 278 near Snook.

"It seems like every hour or so I learn new information about this case and everything that I've learned helps Henry Magee," said Attorney Dick DeGuerin.

DeGuerin says the Magee Family is devastated by the death of Sowders who is someone they knew.

But he says Henry who's more commonly called Hank, was defending himself while sleeping in the living room at 5 A.M. last Thursday when deputies burst through the door.

"He was scared for his girlfriend who was five months pregnant and I think he did what a lot of homeowners would have done; he protected himself and her from what he thought was an invading robber," said DeGuerin.

Police recovered the semiautomatic assault rifle allegedly used to kill Sowders and several other guns the defense attorney says were legally owned.

They also found marijuana plants and some seedlings.

"I doubt that the entire amount of the marijuana would be over a misdemeanor case," DeGuerin added.

On Thursday Burleson County Sheriff Dale Stroud said Adam Sowders recently was promoted to Sergeant Investigator.

"Adam was well respected, extremely well liked and he's going to leave a big hole in what we do here. And there will be a continuing investigation as we go," Sheriff Stroud said.

"The deeper I get into this, the more I'm convinced that this is something that never should have happened that was a tragic accident from the very beginning," DeGuerin said.

Henry Magee's attorney says the sheriff's department was issued a no knock, no announcement warrant, which he says are rarely issued in Texas because of potential dangers.

Dick DeGeurin claims the sheriff's office had bad information from an informant who'd just been arrested when they chose to pursue a search warrant.

DeGuerin is a high profile, Houston attorney. His past clients include former House Speaker TomDeLay and Branch Davidian leader David Koresh.

Henry Magee remains in the Washington County Jail on a million dollars bond charged with capital murder.

Sowders will be buried on Friday. His visitation is Thursday from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at Central Baptist Church in College Station. The funeral is Friday at 1:00 p.m. at Central Baptist. The interment will follow at Oak Lawn Cemetery in Somerville.


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