LITTLE RIVER-ACADEMY — Little River-Academy Police Chief Lee Dixon, 54, died late Thursday afternoon in the line of duty after being in the position for about a month, said Lt. Donnie Adams, Bell County Sheriff’s Department spokesman, from the scene of a shooting at the intersection of West Main Street and Allison Drive.
Dixon was pronounced dead at 5:28 p.m. by Justice of the Peace Ted Duffield. His body was sent to the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas for an autopsy.
Authorities said the alleged shooter was in Bell County Jail and identified him as David Risner, 56. No charges had been filed late Thursday as the investigation continues.
Adams said Dixon responded at 5:10 p.m. to the call of a man with a gun. At first Dixon said he didn’t need any assistance, but soon came back on the radio asking for help. Then the switchboard lit up with calls reporting a shooting, Adams said.
Mayor Ronnie White said he was still trying to “soak it all in.”
“This isn’t normal here. We have little things go on but nothing like this,” White said. “Chief Dixon was so tickled to be back here.”
Dixon was police chief in Little River-Academy from 2004 to 2005 before going to Milam County Sheriff’s Office as a deputy.
Residents clustered in groups trying to come to terms with what they saw Thursday evening — their police chief lying covered with a sheet on the front porch of a residence.
Dixon’s wife, Mary, arrived at the scene and was given the news of her husband’s death by Bill Easley, a resident.
Easley said Mary Dixon is employed by the Temple College Police Department at the Hutto campus and said the couple has children.
One person who lived nearby said he heard three loud shots.
Another said he saw law enforcement officers rush to the porch and begin CPR on whoever was there, and also saw a man running from the scene before he was captured by officers.
Joseph Calhoun said he knew the man who lived in the house and said he was a retired Army veteran who was an “old hot-rodder” that liked going on weekends to Little River-Academy Dragway. Calhoun said he hoped the shooter wasn’t his friend.
Calhoun also knew Dixon, and said, “You couldn’t ask for a better person. He’d give you the shirt off his back.”
Adams said the investigation will be conducted by Bell County Sheriff’s Department along with the Texas Rangers, the Department of Public Safety and FBI.