Man Opens Fire on Van Zandt County Deputy: Sheriff

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Getty Images/Van Zandt County Sheriff's Office

    A Canton man was arrested after the Van Zandt County sheriff says he opened fire on a deputy.

    According to the Van Zandt County Sheriff's Office, a deputy responding to a criminal trespass complaint, drove up to Stephen Garrett Martin's home in the 300 block of County Road 2140.

    The officer heard two loud noises and felt a violent vibration coming from the front bumper of his patrol car, the sheriff says that's when he realized bullets had struck his cruiser.

    The deputy said he saw Martin in the doorway of the home holding a handgun, that's when the deputy threw his car in reverse. In an attempt to leave the location, the deputy's cruiser got stuck on a metal gate, fence post and barbed wire near the entrance of the property.

    Martin came out of the house and was on the porch when the deputy says he finally complied with the deputy's orders to put the gun down and put his hands up.

    A Van police officer arrived at the home and helped the deputy take Martin in to custody. The sheriff's office says Martin had a second fully loaded gun hidden in the waistband of his pants.

    While in custody the sheriff says Martin told the officers there was a body in the residence and there were two men in camouflage hiding in the trees in his front yard. Officers checked and found no body and no people in the trees.

    According to the sheriff, during the safety frisk of the residence, deputies and police officers saw numerous weapons in the home and said the interior appears to have been shot up.

    "There are many individuals living within our communities who are suffering from emotional issues, mental health issues or anger issues. Some of these individuals are very dangerous. Law enforcement agencies are struggling with how to deal with these individuals who need to be in mental health hospitals, but because of mental health budgetary issues end up being incarcerated in county jails all over the state," Sheriff Michael Lindsey Ray said in a news release.

    Martin was taken to the Van Zandt County Jail, he's being charged with attempted capital murder of a peace officer. Martin is being held on $1 million bond.