Second investigator in probe of slain Texas deputy fired for misconduct

Reuters News
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Posted: Feb 10, 2016 3:54 PM

By Jon Herskovitz

AUSTIN, Texas (Reuters) - An investigator in the fatal ambush shooting of a Houston-area deputy has been fired for inappropriate behavior, the Harris County Sheriff's Office said on Wednesday, making him the second person in the probe to be terminated.

The office said it had fired Deputy M. DeLeon on Tuesday for being untruthful in the course of the investigation into the death of Harris County Sheriff's Deputy Darren Goforth.

Goforth, 47, was fatally shot in a hail of bullets on Aug. 28 as he fueled a patrol car at a Houston-area gas station.

The suspected shooter, Shannon Miles, 31, was committed this week to a state mental hospital for 120 days after prosecutors found he was not competent to stand trial at this time. Miles has been charged with capital murder, which is punishable by death.

In October, the Harris County Sheriff's office fired Sergeant Craig Clopton, a homicide investigator, after a receiving a report that he had sexual relations with a witness in the case.

Clopton had "consensual sexual relations" with the same woman who has claimed she had been in a sexual relationship with Goforth, court papers said.

Defense attorneys have argued that Goforth was filling up his patrol car while on his way to meet the woman cited in the case. The move is seen as an attempt to argue that the deputy was not on duty at the time he was killed and Miles should not face the death penalty.

(Reporting by Jon Herskovitz; Editing by Bernard Orr)