Fort Worth, TX – Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO) Sergeant Keith Shepherd died on Friday night, after he suffered “significant injuries to his head” outside the jail where he worked.
The 19-year veteran-of-the-force was expected to return from his break between 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., but he never showed, Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn told reporters during a press conference.
His fellow deputies went looking for him, and ultimately found him inside his personal vehicle in the parking lot just before 9:30 p.m.
There was blood both inside and outside the sergeant’s car, the sheriff explained.
The incident was reported to Fort Worth police as a shooting, KDFW reported.
“It was apparent that there was some significant injuries to him,” Fort Worth Police Sergeant Chris Daniels confirmed during the press conference.
Despite initial police reports that Sergeant Shepherd was shot, Fort Worth police now say that there was “no evidence to suggest” he was shot, according to Star Telegram.
UPDATE: Authorities have now confirmed that he died of a medical episode. Click HERE for latest updates.
Sgt. Shepherd was rushed to Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital with significant head trauma, and later succumbed to his wounds, Sheriff Waybourn explained.
Sheriff Waybourn said that investigators are reviewing security footage from the parking lot security cameras to help understand the chain of events that led up to the fatal shooting, The Dallas Morning News reported.
The sheriff said that no suspect has been identified, but that he did not believe there was any danger to the public.
"Fort Worth will be the lead investigation agency on what happened out here tonight. We're confident it will unravel soon," Sheriff Waybourn said, according to KXAS. "I don't believe that the neighborhood is in danger. I don't believe that right now. What I do think is that we've got to follow the facts until we understand what happened."
Sgt. Shepherd was assigned to the jail staff at the time of his death, TCSO Chief of Staff David McClelland told the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
He was named as the department’s Confinement Supervisor of the Year in 2011, the TCSO said in a Facebook post.
“He had a great reputation at Tarrant County Sheriff’s Office,” Sheriff Waybourn told reporters. “He was a strong leader, [and] he was loved.”
Sgt. Shepherd was also a husband and father, the sheriff added.
This is a developing story and we will keep you updated. For all of our updates, follow us on Facebook and go to your news feed preferences under your settings, then select that you want to see more of Blue Lives Matter posts in your news feed. Otherwise, Facebook may not show you updates.