HOUSTON --A Harris County Precinct 7 deputy constable was shot multiple times last night in what investigators say was an 'ambush' attack.
Deputy Constable Alden Clopton was shot four times at the 3000 block of Alabama Street near Ennis.
PHOTOS: Deputy shot in "ambush" attack
Clopton was in surgery at Memorial Hermann Hospital for nearly six hours and has now been moved to critical care, Constable May Walker says.
"We think he is going to be okay," Walker says. "He's a strong guy."
Investigators say around 11:20pm, Deputy Clopton and a reserve deputy were wrapping up a traffic stop on Alabama Street when someone opened fire on them. Deputy Clopton was standing beside the reserve deputy's patrol car when several bullets struck.
The shots came from across Alabama where there is a bike path. The reserve deputy then got out of her car and shot back in the direction of the gunfire.
"She heard multiple gun shots, and saw that her partner had been struck. She got out of her patrol vehicle and fearing for her partner's safety and her own saw a suspect across the street, she returned fire one time unknown if the suspect is struck, the suspect then fled," said Kese Smith with HPD.
Four bullets struck Clopton in the back, two of the shots entering Clopton's patrol vehicle, Walker says. Another bullet went into the ground. In the operating room, surgeons found a bullet was lodged near his heart, while three others were in his abdomen.
A person of interest is being interviewed by deputies, but Constable Walker could not give any other details. The person was taken into custody at a nearby fire station after they matched a description of the suspect.
Constable Walker says the deputy constable has "a road to recovery" ahead of him.
HPD still on scene investigating Precinct 7 Constable shot. The deputy has non life threatening injuries. pic.twitter.com/sQ12N5bWQT— Jeff Ehling (@JeffEhlingABC13) April 14, 2016
"I have faith and believe he is going to do well," she says. "We're asking the community to pray for him."
Walker says the surgeons did not remove the bullets, but worked to address Clopton's wounds.
Deputy Clopton is an 11-year veteran of the Constable's Office. Deputies says his wife works for the Harris County Sheriff's Office, and that his family is at the hospital.
"His family is obviously in shock," says Holland Jones, spokesman for the Constable's Office. "Hopefully his family's prayers will be answered."
Because this is an officer-involved shooting, the district attorney's office will send an investigator.
Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick today released the following statement after this shooting and an Austin police officer who was shot this morning:
"Please join Jan and me in praying for the full recovery of these brave men who put on a badge to protect us every day. The targeting of police must end in America."
Last night's shooting is the second time in the last few months that a local law enforcement officer has been ambushed. Harris County Sheriff's Deputy Darren Goforth was shot and killed last year outside a gas station in northwest Harris County.
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