Wise County shootout investigation shifts back to Colorado



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Posted on March 22, 2013 at 9:38 PM

Updated Saturday, Mar 23 at 5:05 AM

DECATUR -- Colorado investigators have now left Wise County and returned home after a whirlwind 24-hour trip here that might have been the break they needed in two high-profile murders.

With suspect Evan Ebel dead here, there's not much left for Texas deputies to do either, except gather their reports, put everything on paper, and help Colorado with any details it needs as it determines whether Ebel is involved in killing a Domino's Pizza delivery man and Colorado's director of prisons.

Wise County deputies spent late Friday searching Ebel's badly-damaged Cadillac for clues -- anything that might link him to the Colorado murders.

The Cadillac has Colorado license plates, looks like the vehicle leaving the Colorado murder scenes, and Wise Co. search warrant obtained by News 8 reveals Ebel used Hornady 9mm shell bullets in Texas. That is the same brand and caliber of bullet casings found at the murder scene of Colorado state prison chief Tom Clements.

Still, that state stopped short of saying Ebel was their suspect.

"We don't have to be rocket scientist to know that's a clue," said John San Augustin, El Paso Co., Colorado Sheriff's Office. "We're following up on it and going to see where it takes us."

Ebel shot Montague County Deputy James Boyd three times during a traffic stop on Thursday. Johnson Co. detective David Blankenship drove up moments later.

"I just thank God for putting me there at the right time to be able to provide assistance," said Det. Blankenship.

Blankenship and his mother, a nurse, were driving towards Wichita Falls to go visit relatives when he noticed Dep. Boyd on the ground.

"That officer was alert," Blankenship continued. "I'm extremely proud of what he was able to do -- stay calm and provide valuable information."

Boyd is recovering at a Fort Worth hospital from two gunshots that hit his protective vest and a wound on his head.

Pursuing deputies, police, and state troopers caught up to Ebel minutes later in neighboring Wise County.

He crashed his Cadillac after a chase. Deputies then killed him in a shootout.

"Now we know who this guy is," said Wise Co. Sheriff David Walker. "What do we need to know about him? Where did he come from? Where was he going? That's everybody's question - why was he in Texas?"

That's what investigators still don't know, along with Ebel's motive for starting it all.

E-mail jwhitely@wfaa.com