By Bud Gillett


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FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – Fort Worth Police say the man accused of shooting Sgt. Shane Drake was Wendell King, 40, of Fort Worth. King died in the return fire.

Residents in the southwest Fort Worth neighborhood where the shooting happened say King and his mother are mostly private people, but also say they have heard gunfire from the house before.

King ran a lawn care business from his house. Some neighbors say they feel he had what they politely called “mental issues.”

“I’m not sure he was ‘all there,’ mentally,” Jacob Johnson says adding, “We thought he was mentally ill at some point, and he was real quiet.”

Several neighbors privately confirm Johnson’s assessment. Still, King’s only recorded brush with the law was a gun-related arrest in Benbrook a couple years ago. His truck was traced to a report that someone fired a gun at a passing motorist. But the complainants couldn’t identify King in a photo line-up, so he was never charged with any crime.

But Johnson has heard gunfire here before. “Once or twice, we’re not sure where they came from.”

Police say Wendell King’s mother contacted officers twice last night; first for inadvertently touching a panic alarm, the second a welfare check when she couldn’t get a response from King in his bedroom. It was on the second trip he reportedly opened fire on police, striking Sgt. Shane Drake. That’s when police returned fire and killed him — something Johnson regrets.

“Yeah, it’s always sad to lose a neighbor. I mean, I’ve just got to send prayers out to his mom, and of course the officer that got shot on duty last night.”

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