Why Did East Texans Receive A ‘Blue Alert’ On Cell Phones Last Night?
At the request of the Clay County Sheriff's office in North Texas, a state wide 'Blue Alert' was issued Monday night at 11:21 p.m.
Cell phones all across East Texas began buzzing as they sat resting on night stands because of a 'Law Enforcement Blue Alert in this area' message was sent to the phones. The message said to monitor radio or TV, however, as I was monitoring and searching online I could not find any information, as many other East Texans did.
Learning this morning from NBCDFW, it turns out the Blue Alert was issued at the request of the Clay County Sheriff's office and authorities. Clay County is to the east of Wichita Falls and borders Oklahoma. Sheriff's officials there were searching for a suspect who shot a Clay County Deputy and the department was searching for a white four door Cadillac with Texas license plates FXJ-1334.
Thankfully the deputy is expected to recover and authorities did locate the abandoned vehicle around 8 a.m. this morning. Local authorities continue to look for a white thin build man in his mid 20's who shot the deputy in the chest, but thankfully the bullet was stopped by his protective vest.
So what exactly a 'Blue Alert'?
A Blue Alert is issued to apprehend violent criminals who kill or seriously wound local, state or federal law enforcement officers. It was enacted in Texas by former Texas Governor Rick Perry on August 18, 2008. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety there is a set of criteria that must be met before an alert is issued:
- A law enforcement officer must have been killed or seriously injured by an offender.
- The investigating law enforcement agency must determine that the offender poses a serious risk or threat to the public and other law enforcement personnel.
- A detailed description of the offender's vehicle, vehicle tag, or partial tag must be available for broadcast to the public.
- The investigating law enforcement agency of jurisdiction must recommend activation of the Blue Alert to the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS).