Sheriff: Wounded deputy will lose sight in one eye; doctors positive about his recovery
“That’s a miracle from God” that he’s alive, the sheriff added
BOWIE COUNTY, Texas (KSLA) — The Bowie County Sheriff’s Office deputy who was shot once in his face with a .45-caliber handgun will lose sight in his left eye, the sheriff said.
But Lt. Scott Lillis sustained no brain injuries, Sheriff Jeff Neal added during an emotional news conference the afternoon of Monday, Aug. 8.
“That’s a miracle from God” that he’s alive, said the sheriff, still visibly shaken by the weekend crime spree that climaxed with the suspect — an “evil, dangerous man” — dead of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
After the nearly 20-hour manhunt ended, Neal said he got his wife to drive him to the Little Rock, Ark., hospital where his deputy is being treated.
“Watching his wife was the first time that I broke down,” Neal said of Lillis’ wife, Venus.
The wounded deputy got out of surgery Sunday, Aug. 7 and will be released soon. His doctors are very positive about his recovery, the sheriff said, but the father of three has a long way to go. The sheriff says corrective surgery is scheduled for a later date.
Lillis’ medical bills will be taken care of through workman’s compensation, Neal said.
He asked everyone for prayers for Lillis and his family and to support any fundraisers, including benefits being held by some Bowie County restaurants.
One such benefit will be held at On the Border in Texarkana, Texas on Aug. 18. The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. The restaurant says 10% of final sales for din-in and to-go orders will be donated to the Lillis family. There will also be a box at the front of the restaurant to collect cash donations.
Another business in the area is also holding a benefit for the injured deputy. Walk-On’s Sports Bistreaux will donate all of its profits from sales on Aug. 10 to the Lillis family. Tony Langford Roofing is partnering with the restaurant and will match all donations from the day.
“If one of us is hurting, we’re all hurting.”
Copyright 2022 KSLA. All rights reserved.