Suspect's Shotgun Blast Wounds Creek Co. Sheriff's Deputy

Wednesday, September 9th 2009, 7:40 am
By: News On 6

By Craig Day, The News On 6

OILTON, OK - A Creek County Sheriff's deputy is lucky to be alive after being shot in the line of duty.  Creek County Deputy Dusty Thomas is recovering from a shotgun blast at a Tulsa hospital.  The shooting happened on Tuesday while he was assisting the Oilton Police Department with a suicidal subject call.

Creek County Deputy Dusty Thomas and other law enforcement officers responded to a suicidal man with a shotgun in Oilton.  After a three hour standoff, Sgt. Thomas moved in to Taser the man, when suddenly the deputy's life could have been lost.

"He turned, put the shotgun over his shoulder, and shot from behind.  Hit him in the left shoulder," said Creek County Sheriff's Captain John Cooper.

Deputy Thomas, who started with the Creek County Sheriff's Office in 2000, took a direct hit from the 4:10 shotgun. 

"He's carrying a big load of buckshot in him in his shoulder right now that he may have to carry the rest of his life," said Creek County Sheriff's Captain John Cooper.

Even with wounds to his shoulder, Thomas was able to take down the suspect, Charles Wyrick, until other officers could arrest him.

Deputy Thomas is being treated at a Tulsa hospital and should be released within the next couple of days.

"Very lucky.  Extremely lucky.  One inch the other way, he'd be dead," said Creek County Sheriff's Captain John Cooper.

Thomas worked his way up in the department, from detention officer, to deputy and now sergeant.  He's a self defense instructor, member of the dive team, and special operations team.

"His passion is helping people, and through this job, he helps people," said Creek County Sheriff's Captain John Cooper.

Coworkers are thankful Thomas survived and look forward to the time when he's out helping people again.

"Extreme terror.  You work with these people, you live with them out in the field just about, they're like your brother.  They're family.  And, when family members hurt, you hurt," said Creek County Sheriff's Captain John Cooper.

The suspect, Charles Wyrick, was taken to the hospital after complaining of chest pains.  He'll face a number of charges.