The Texas Highway Patrol Trooper who was shot and killed during a traffic stop on Thanksgiving has been identified as Damon Allen, 41. Allen, who was with the department since 2002 was a husband and father of three children.
Allen was shot and killed at about 4 p.m. on Interstate 45 just south of Fairfield in Freestone County. He was returning to a patrol vehicle when the suspect fired shots with a rifle. Allen died at the scene, according to Texas DPS.
The suspected gunman, identified as 32-year-old Dabrett Black, of Lindale, fled the scene and was later captured in Waller County which is northwest of Houston.
Shots were later reported fired in the area where the suspect was spotted fleeing on foot. Texas DPS Troopers and multiple law enforcement agencies cornered Black before he was safely taken into custody around 9 p.m. EMS was on scene to check the suspect's condition.
Suspect info on officer shooting: Darbrett Black, black male, 5’ 11”, 175 lbs. Left scene driving a Gray Chevy Malibu LP# JDN4273. Incident occurred in Freestone county at approx 4:00 PM south of Fairfield on I45. Contact law enforcement if spotted and do not approach. #dfwnews— Navarro County OEM (@NavarroOEM) November 23, 2017
Black has a previous criminal history that includes evading arrest and violence toward law enforcement, authorities say.
This is the Darbrett Black who is wanted in the death of the Texas State Trooper. His arrest history includes violence toward law enforcement officers. We must catch him soon. pic.twitter.com/wrIk8BVz9t— Denton County DA (@DentonCountyDA) November 24, 2017
In July, WFAA's sister station CBS19 in Tyler reported Black was jailed in Smith County after a car chase with deputies. The chase ended when Black struck a patrol vehicle and both he and a deputy were transported to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. Black was charged with evading arrest, aggravated assault against a public servant and reckless driving.
"Our DPS family is heartbroken tonight after one of Texas' finest law enforcement officers was killed in the line of duty," said DPS Director Steven McCraw. "Texas Highway Patrol Trooper Damon Allen was a loving husband and father of three, and we ask for your prayers for his entire family and his many friends and colleagues during the difficult days ahead. Trooper Allen's dedication to duty, and his bravery and selfless sacrifice on this Thanksgiving Day, will never be forgotten."
Gov. Greg Abbott also reacted to the fatal shooting from his Twitter account.
"Sad on Thanksgiving to lose one of our state troopers in the line of duty," he wrote. "Prayers for his family. Swift justice for his killer."
Reporter Jason Whitely contributed to this report