Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Randall Wayne Mays
Attorney General Abbott added: Thanks to a coordinated effort by Henderson County District Attorney Donna Bennett, Assistant Attorney General Wesley Mau, the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office and the Texas Rangers, a sad chapter in Henderson County history has come to a close.
On May 17, 2007, Henderson County Sheriff’s deputies responded to a domestic disturbance call placed by a concerned neighbor who reported hearing gunshots at Mays’ property. After appearing to cooperate with the deputies, Mays barricaded himself inside his house, where he used a high-powered rifle to shoot at officers. Mays mortally wounded deputies Ogburn and Habelt and shot Lt. Harris in the leg before finally surrendering to officers.
During the capital murder trial, prosecutors played audio from a videotape taken from one patrol officer’s vehicle at the scene of the standoff. The tape brought witnesses and family members to tears as they listened to Mays shoot and kill the deputies. The standoff occurred just hours after the three deputies attended a local memorial service honoring fellow officers.
During the sentencing phase of the trial, witnesses testified that Mays remains a violent threat to the community. A Tyler psychiatrist testified that the best prediction of future behavior is past behavior. Mays’ criminal record includes previous arrests for public intoxication and assault of a public servant. Witnesses also testified that Mays and his wife also have a history of domestic disputes.