An exchange of gunfire following a traffic stop has claimed the life of John L. Stanford, a 39-year-old resident of Avinger. The incident occurred last Monday on US 259, leaving a community in shock and prompting an ongoing investigation led by the Texas Rangers.
The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) initiated the traffic stop in Gregg County, prompting Stanford to attempt to evade law enforcement. This led to a pursuit that eventually came to a halt in Harrison County.
According to authorities, Stanford abandoned his vehicle and attempted to escape on foot into the nearby woods near FM Road 450. During the foot chase, an altercation ensued between Stanford and a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper, resulting in the exchange of gunfire.
Stanford lost his life at the scene, with law enforcement pronouncing him dead shortly thereafter.