DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) – A tense scene at the Walmart on South Parkway in Huntsville Tuesday afternoon. An off-duty Morgan County sheriff’s deputy shot a man while trying to make an arrest. The deputy says he recognized David Horton as a wanted felon. Horton was treated and released from Huntsville Hospital then transferred to the Morgan County Jail.
The shooting investigation continues today. Morgan County Sheriff Ana Franklin says she is waiting on the results of a Huntsville Police Department probe of the incident and plans to turn it over to the Alabama Bureau of Investigation.
Sheriff Franklin declined to discuss the specifics of the shooting until HPD completes their investigation. But she says an officer is bound by his oath 24 hours a day, whether he’s on or off duty.
“It puts law enforcement in a very tricky situation when you’re off duty and if a crime is being committed and we know that someone has committed a crime, you know, if you don’t act on it then you haven’t acted within your oath and if you do act on it, it’s very, you’ve got to be very careful in how you deal with a situation like that,” Franklin says.
The off-duty deputy told Huntsville Police his weapon accidentally discharged and hit David Horton. Witnesses told us the deputy squared and fired as Horton tried to run away.
“We’ll look at all of that as we get this information into us and of course we’ll go and see as far as rules and regulations internally and administratively what is the next step after we get the Huntsville PD and district attorney and Madison County’s accessment of it.”
As is customary, the deputy has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation. While Sheriff Franklin declined to identify the deputy, she says he is a veteran officer in good standing with the department.