ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — Police are searching for two burglary suspects after Sgt. Craig “Hutch” Hutchinson was killed in a shooting at his house early Monday morning.
Hutchinson, 54, was shot at his home on Oak Meadow Drive in the Cimmaron neighborhood, according to the Texas Department of Public Safety.
Travis County Sheriff Greg Hamilton said Hutchinson radioed the department around 1:22 a.m. when he saw suspects running around his backyard. By 1:32 a.m. when officers arrived at Hutchinson’s house, they found his body near a creek behind his backyard with a gunshot wound. He was transported to a Round Rock Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
“Our officer came up on them and found individuals in his shed and I think that’s when the confrontation occurred,” said Hamilton. “At this time we don’t have any more information.”
Round Rock Police tell WISH-TV’s sister station KXAN they are asking people in the neighborhood to stay inside their homes. There is a large police presence off of McNeil Road near the intersection of SH 45 and MoPac. A SWAT team, DPS Troopers, Pflugerville police and an Air One helicopter are assisting with the search for the suspects.
Portions of Southbound Interstate 35 were closed Monday morning as the deputy’s body was taken from the hospital to the Travis County Medical Examiner’s office in downtown Austin.
“This guy was a big teddy bear and everybody loved him,” said Hamilton. “He was a gentle bear and he taught me everything I know and I loved that guy to death.”
Hutchinson is known for cracking multiple burglary cases across his career with the department. He has been in the service for 32 years and was planning on retiring in September. His family has been notified.
Austin Police Chief Art Acevedo tweeted “Please keep our Travis County Sheriff’s family in your thoughts and prayers. Sad, troubling time we live in. Austin police stands with our friends.”
Anyone with any information is asked to call the tip line at (512) 671-2767. A Lakeway Judge is now offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest of the person or persons responsible for Hutchinson’s death. Judge Kevin Madison said he was a former Travis County deputy and has pooled together funds with his wife for anyone with information. Madison said he believes someone out there knows something and they need to talk fast.
The last time a Travis County Sheriff’s deputy was killed was in 2014 when Senior Deputy Jessica Hollis was killed after her patrol car was swept away in fast-moving water.