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Friends in Big Lake Remember Deputy Josh Mitchell 8/2/12
CBS 7 Reporter
August 2, 2012
Big Lake, TX - It's been more than 24 hours since a gunman fired a shot, killing a deputy and prompting an 18-hour standoff.
Reagan County Sheriff Jeff Garner says 26-year-old Deputy Josh Mitchell was at the home in the 1100 block of Main Street in Big Lake investigating a complaint.
"For whatever reason, when deputy Mitchell approached him, Mr. Madison found it necessary to shoot him and there's no explanation for that," Sheriff Garner says.
Tonight the suspect, 42-year-old Marcus Wade Madison, is recovering at the hospital after surrendering to law enforcement agents Thursday morning. Madison was arrested after a swat team unleashed stun grenades and tear gas into the house.
Meanwhile, dozens of local law enforcement and West Texans lined up outside a San Angelo funeral home to pay their respects to Deputy Mitchell.
"We felt he would make it, then when we heard...it’s just still so hard to believe. He was so young," says family friend Kashia Craig.
"Everybody kind of bunched together, of course tears were flowing, already talking about stories making you smile about Josh," says another friend Tracy Roberson.
They remember a man who loved to hunt and married his high school sweetheart.
"As soon as he saw her, I think he knew she was the girl for him,” Craig says. “They were just so cute together."
"It’s very surreal, everybody is at a devastation and a numb point,” claims Roberson. “You can't believe this happened in a little small town, especially our town."
"It’s like losing a member of your own family,” Sheriff Garner says, fighting back tears. “There are no words to express what were all going through right now."
Sheriff Garner says Mitchell had been with the Reagan County Sheriffs Office for at least eight years. A memorial fund has been set up today for the wife of Deputy Mitchell, Jill Mitchell.
If you would like to make a donation in his honor you can visit any branch of Security Bank. Simply ask to make a contribution to the Jill Mitchell account. All branches of the bank have been notified of this fund.