Shannon J. Miles, 30, is charged with capital murder

By Tara Fowler
Updated August 31, 2015 11:50 AM
Credit: Pat Sullivan/AP

Shannon J. Miles was arraigned on Monday morning in the shooting of Darren Goforth, a 10-year veteran of the Harris County Sheriff’s Office.

Miles, 30, is charged with capital murder in Friday night’s slaying, which has been described as “clearly unprovoked” by Harris County Sheriff Ron Hickman, the Associated Press reports.

He is being held without bond and has two court-appointed attorneys, neither of whom were at the courthouse, according to the AP.

Goforth, 47, was fueling his vehicle in uniform when he was shot from behind at a gas station in northwest Harris Country, Texas, at about 8:30 p.m. on Friday night.

After Goforth fell, the suspect then came over and shot him multiple times as Goforth lay on the ground.

During Monday’s arraignment, D.A. Devon Anderson said that Miles fired a total of 15 .40 caliber rounds into Goforth. He added that the investigation was just beginning.

“He runs up behind Deputy Goforth and puts the gun to the back of his head and shoots. Deputy Goforth hits the ground and then he continues to unload his gun, shooting repeatedly into the back of Deputy Goforth,” Anderson said.

“My husband was an incredibly, intricate blend of toughness and gentility,” Goforth’s wife, Kathleen, said in a statement Saturday. “There are no words for this. He was always loyal, fiercely so. He was ethical. The right thing to do is what guided his internal compass.”

Investigators have yet to establish a motive in the slaying, but they believe that Goforth was targeted because he was in uniform.

“We’ve heard Black Lives Matter, All Lives Matter. Well, cops’ lives matter, too,” Hickman said.

But Miles’ mother has insisted that her son is innocent because they were shopping together at the time of the killing.

“We got back, we couldn’t get on our street,” she told KPRC. “So after we couldn’t get on our street, when we came back, the back way to our house and then that’s when we [were] faced with SWAT and dogs and cops and guns and they handcuffed him.”

Miles has an extensive criminal record, including convictions for disorderly conduct with a firearm, criminal mischief, giving false information to police and resisting arrest, the AP reports. Records show he received several short jail sentences, from six to 10 days, according to the AP.

Authorities located Miles after they traced a red pickup truck seen on surveillance footage back to a home in Copperfield, Texas.

A vigil was held at the gas station on Saturday evening in honor of the slain deputy.

Security was tight in the courtroom Monday morning. “I have never seen this many bailiffs in a courtroom before,” tweeted Fox 26 reporter John Donnelly.

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