Deputies Sue Nye and John Werts were transporting inmate Brent Taff on a trip that was supposed to end at the Tulsa County Jail, but that all changed while the team waited for a connecting flight in Dallas.
The Tulsa County Sheriff's Office says Deputy John Werts fired his gun at Brent Taff after the inmate rushed out of a bathroom stall and hit him in the face.
Werts shot inmate Brent Taff in the hand after a scuffle in one of the bathrooms. The 53-year-old Nye tackled and subdued Taff, according to Major Shannon T. Clark, Tulsa County Sheriff's Office.
Both deputies have returned to Tulsa where Werts, 29, is expected to make a full recovery and return to duty soon, Clark said.
Brent Taff's friends say they are shocked to hear what happened at the airport.
"I couldn't believe this had happened," said friend Jim Moore. "I knew the situation he was in, but I couldn't believe it progressed."
Moore didn't expect to see pictures of his friend Brent Taff on the ground bleeding after being shot inside the Dallas - Fort Worth Airport.
"It's sad," he said. "I feel bad for the police officer that had to be in that incident. I feel really bad for their family, for the people who had to be there and deal with it. I feel bad for Brent being in that situation."
Deputies were taking Taff back to the Tulsa County Jail on a warrant for threatening a judge. Court records show Taff also has pending court cases that involve violating a protective order, threatening violent acts, stalking and kidnapping.
Taff's friend Dean Conaway says his friend suffers from post-traumatic stress and mental illness following his service with the Marine Corps and recent divorce. Friends say Taff rose to the rank of sergeant.
Conway says his friend was off his medication and doesn't typically act out like this.
"He needs help; he should be at the VA getting the help instead of being in jail," said friend Dean Conaway.
The Tulsa County District Attorney says Taff won't return to Tulsa anytime soon. The D.A. says Taff is facing multiple felonies in Dallas for trying to escape from custody and assaulting the deputy at the airport.