Shooting victims now in stable condition

Eight outside investigators aiding police with inquiry into Monday's attack

By BRUCE ALSOBROOK, News-Telegram Managing Editor

August 20, 2008 - Two men rushed to the hospital following a double-shooting Monday morning are in stable condition, investigators said today.

But few other details were being released, in part because of the magnitude and difficulty of the inquiry, as well as out of concern for people involved in the case.

"The victims are stable, but we're not releasing the hospital locations or the identities of the victims at this time," said Sulphur Springs Police Det. David Gilmore, the lead investigator into the case.

Police were sent to apartment #3 at 513 Church St. about 1 a.m. Monday after dispatchers fielded a report of a shooting at the location. Officers found two gunshot victims, both males in their late teens to 20s, Police Chief Jim Bayuk said Monday. Police had also been told the shooters "entered the apartment with faces covered," but have not said how many gunmen are believed to have been involved.

So far, that's about as specific as investigators have been with their public comments, but they say there are compelling reasons for being guarded with information.

"We're not releasing many details due to the complex nature of this investigation and because of safety concerns that have arisen [for some of the people involved]," Gilmore said today.

It is turning out to be both a difficult and important investigation, the police chief said.

"I'm dedicating a lot of manpower to this," Bayuk said Tuesday morning, a day after investigators spent an estimated 10 hours combing the crime scene for clues. "We're trying to get this solved as quickly as possible."

Gilmore said eight outside investigators are helping police try to find the suspects in the shootings, including Texas Rangers and the criminal investigation division of the Hopkins County Sheriff's Office.

"Sheriff Butch Adams and I have a good working relationship," Bayuk said. "After I conferred with the sheriff, he obligated three of his officers to help us with this investigation."

District Attorney Martin Braddy has also been helping police with paperwork and advising them on procedures.

And they need all they help they can get -- police say they are sifting through a large amount of information and rumors, some of it conflicting.

"We still have people to interview, and we're going out to collect more evidence later today," Gilmore said. "This is one of those cases that could take quite a while to sort out."

The police chief is also hoping someone with knowledge of what really happened early Monday morning will come forward.

"Anybody who has information about this case, we are asking them to please call the police department -- or Crime Stoppers, if they want a $1,000 reward," Bayuk said.

The main telephone number to the police department is 903-885-7602. Crime Stoppers can be reached by calling 903-885-2020. People who provide tips to Crime Stoppers can do so anonymously, and they cannot be forced to testify in court. Rewards are paid in such a way that their identities are kept secret.

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