A North Carolina sheriff’s deputy was declared “medically deceased” after being shot in the face by a career criminal Thursday, according to reports.
Ryan Hendrix, 35, an eight-year veteran of the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office, was dispatched to a Hendersonville home shortly before 3 a.m. on reports of a man breaking into a vehicle when he was shot, WYFF-TV reported.
Police said Hendrix approached Robert Ray Doss, a wanted parole violator, who was sitting in a pickup truck across the street from the home.
“The suspect initially appeared to comply with lawful orders to show the deputies his hands, to show his hands,” Henderson County Sheriff Lowell Griffin said during an emotional news briefing.
“But in one rapid movement, he retrieved a gun, firing one round, striking a Henderson County Sheriff’s Office deputy in the face and critically wounding him.”
“The other Henderson County Sheriff’s Office deputies — there were two there at that moment — returned fire, ultimately killing the suspect.”
Hendrix was taken to Mission Hospital, where he died just before 1 p.m., WSPA-TV said.
“Ryan was doing the job he was born to do and he died doing the job he loved,” his family said in a statement.
The deputy was the father of two and was scheduled to be married next month, the outlet said.
Doss was wanted on probation and parole warrants in South Carolina.
Originally from Virginia, Griffin said Doss has prior convictions in South Carolina, Georgia, Maryland, and Virginia, including for drugs and theft.
Police said he was confronted by a homeowner while allegedly trying to break into a car. The homeowner yelled out to Doss, who smashed a bedroom window with a crowbar and even exchanged fire with the unnamed man before cops arrived and found Doss in his truck.
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