PANOLA COUNTY, Texas (KETK) – The life of an East Texas sheriff’s deputy continues to be remembered in part of the inaugural End of Watch Ride to Remember.
The family of Deputy Chris Dickerson were able to take a picture with the trailer memorializing law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty in 2019.
SUSPECT IN THE CASE
According to the sheriff’s office, Dickerson was shot and killed around 2 a.m. New Year’s Eve, while conducting a traffic stop near the intersection of Farm to Market Road 10 and Farm-to-Market Road 2260.
Panola County Sheriff Kevin Lake said the deputy stopped a Chevrolet Tahoe on the north side of FM-10 when the driver suddenly got out of the vehicle and fired a weapon. The deputy returned fire.
The Texas Rangers were called in to help with the investigation.
The suspect, Gregory Newsom, 47, of Shreveport, abruptly jumped out of his vehicle and opened fire when Deputy Dickerson pulled him over. Investigators believe the wounded deputy was able to return fire.
Newson was located about one hour later in in his hometown on Bumcombe Road, suffering from gunshot wounds, a punctured lung, and broken ribs after he crashed.
He had to be taken down by a K9 officer and was treated for a dog bite.
Under Texas law, Newsom can only face life without parole or the death penalty if he is convicted.
HONORING A HERO
Dickerson’s death prompted a national, and even international, show of support from local police and organizations.
A non-profit organization, the 100 Club of East Texas, stepped up to help the family financially. The organization assists in 20 East Texas counties in total.
The U.S. Honor Flag was present for Dickerson’s funeral. The Honor Network coordinated all funeral arrangement on behalf of the family and the department. Although he was killed in 2019, his funeral was the first Line of Duty Death funeral for the U.S. Honor Flag in 2020.
Governor Greg Abbott issued a statement on the deputy’s death in the line of duty:
“My thoughts and prayers are with the family of the Deputy killed in the line of duty and with the Panola County Sheriff’s Office as they deal with the aftermath of this unimaginable tragedy. We must never forget the solemn oath our law enforcement officers take to protect and keep our communities safe. We must also ensure that the perpetrator faces swift justice. I ask that all Texans join Cecilia and me in remembering the sacrifice and service of this brave sheriff’s Deputy.”
WHAT THE ORGANIZATION DOES
E.O.W. Ride to Remember is a non-profit organization dedicated to raise awareness to the law enforcement officers who lost their lives in the line of duty last year.
The money raised goes towards supporting families of fallen law enforcement officers.
Last year in the US we lost 146 police officers in the line of duty.
It is their mission to honor our fallen officers and give their friends, family, and co-workers a chance to remember them by riding in their name.
They will be covering thousands of miles in multiple cities and states throughout June and July 2020.
If you’d like to donate to the organization, you can do so here.