Identities released of suspect and deputy involved in Armstrong County officer-related shooting

Identities of suspect and deputy involved in Armstrong County officer-related shooting released

The Amarillo Special Crimes Unit released the identities of both the man who assaulted the Armstrong County Sheriff along with the deputy that shot him Sunday night.

â??The name of the deceased is Mitch Thompson, 52 years old. The deputy who fired her weapon is Deputy Fleta Barnett,â?? Amarillo Special Crimes Unit Lt. Erick Bohnanon said.

Authorities said the Armstrong County Sheriffâ??s Department responded to a disturbance call at the CEFCO gas station in Claude. Thompson was arrested and taken to the county jail for booking. He then assaulted Sheriff J.R. Walker. They said when Deputy Barnett tried to pry off the suspect and couldnâ??t, she shot him.

Pronews 7 spoke to other local county jails to discover what the policy is concerning weapons in the booking area. According to Randall County, there is not a state law stating law enforcement cannot carry a firearm into a secured area.

Both Randall and Potter County do not allow guns in the facility.

â??At no time are weapons inside our facility,â?? Potter County Detention Centerâ??s Captain Lisa Dawson said.

"When officers come in to book somebody, they pull into our garage or sally port. There are lockers there and they have to lock their weapon in either their car or locker," Randall County Sheriff Joel Richardson said.

Some Facebook posts asked us why a weapon was allowed in the booking area. We discovered weapons are not allowed in the secured area of the Armstrong County Sheriff's Department either.

A deputy at the Armstrong County Sheriffâ??s Department confirmed the incident occurred in an unsecured part of the building.

â??The incident happened before the secured area,â?? Armstrong County Chief Deputy Brandon Brown said.

The jail is on the second floor and no weapons are allowed past the start of the stairway.

An autopsy is scheduled for Thompson on Wednesday morning in Lubbock.