Man charged in shooting death of SMPD officer

Hays County authorities have now formally charged the man suspected of shooting and killing San Marcos Police officer Kenneth Copeland on Monday.    

Stewart Thomas Mettz

Stewart Thomas Mettz, 58, has been charged with capital murder of a peace officer. Mettz was also charged with injury to an elderly person, which is a third-degree felony and assault causing bodily injury, family violence, according to a press release.

Bond has been set at $500,000 for the latter two charges. Hays County Justice of the Peace Maggie H. Moreno did not set bond for the capital murder charge.

Mettz is currently awaiting transport from an Austin area hospital to the Hays County Jail. He is currently under 24-hour guard by Hays County Sheriff’s deputies, according to the release.

According to a Hays County probable cause affidavit, Copeland responded to Mettz’s residence in the 100 block of Valero Drive in San Marcos to serve a felony arrest warrant.

When officers arrived and knocked on the front door, Mettz opened the door and began firing an unknown caliber firearm at the officers, who then returned fire.

Copeland was struck by gunfire and later died as a result of his injuries, according to the affidavit.

Mettz suffered a gunshot wound to his left side and was provided first aid by a peace officer.

While first aid was provided to Mettz, a law enforcement official read Mettz his Miranda rights.

Mettz allegedly said he had shot a police officer approximately two times in the chest, according to the affidavit. He then claimed the gunshot wound he had was inflicted by an officer.

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