LITTLE ELM (CBSDFW.COM) – A North Texas detective was killed in the line of duty Tuesday and today people from across the area have been stopping by the Little Elm Police Department leaving flowers, candles, and kind messages.
Little Elm Police Detective Jerry Walker was taken to Denton Regional Hospital after he was shot while responding to a call about an armed person outside a house.
The SWAT vehicle that eventually rammed into the house on Turtle Cove Drive sat in the front yard of that house until this morning.
Detective Walker was one of the first officers to arrive at the scene about 3 p.m. Tuesday and was among a group of officers who tried to talk with a man armed with a long gun.
Initially, the man was only yelling at the police officers from the backyard. But as officers began to pull back, the man ducked inside the house and began shooting from a window.
Witnesses in the neighborhood say they heard a single gunshot followed by too many to count. “I woke up to a barrage of noises happening da, da, da, da, da, and then it got louder,” recalled Alicia Bray. “I didn’t know what was going on at first. I opened my door and there were police officers in my driveway.”
Detective Walker, 47, was shot in the neck. Neighbors watched as offices frantically loaded him into a squad car, with injuries too serious to wait for an ambulance.
Police who remained at the scene began what would turn out to be a more than six-hour standoff with the suspect — who has still not be identified. It was after 10 p.m. Tuesday when police made their way inside the house and found the male suspect dead. Police did not say how the man died.
The “Lakes of Little Elm” neighborhood remains sealed off to everyone but residents who live there. But that didn’t stopped some North Texans from arriving before sunrise and throughout the morning to express their condolences for Detective Walker and show their support for the Denton County town.
Michael King was resolute as he stood in the darkness. “A lot of people are taking it [shooting] hard,” he said. “I’m here… first one here. I just want to let these guys, let the men and women know that we’re here for them as a community and we’re not going anywhere. We have their backs.”
Many of the mourners are wearing blue as a tribute to Walker and the police department. A growing memorial is also taking shape outside the Little Elm Police Department.
Detective Jerry Walker was promoted to detective in 2013. He was an 18-year law enforcement veteran who joined the Little Elm Police Department in 1998.
Walker leaves behind four children, raging in age from two-months to 22 years old. He is the first officer killed in the line of duty in the town’s history.
A prayer and candlelight vigil will be held for Detective Walker tonight at Little Elm Park. The park is located at 701 West Eldorado Parkway and the event begins at 7 p.m.
Police are asking that citizens not to drop off food, or other donations to help the family, at the police station. Anyone wanting to make some kind of contribution is being asked to bring it to the vigil.
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