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Liberty County deputy recovering from being shot in neck in May, dies from apparent heart attack, officials say

CLEVELAND, Texas – A Liberty County Sheriff’s Office deputy who was shot in the neck by a murder suspect last May has died from an apparent heart attack, officials said.

Officials said Deputy Richard Whitten appeared to have had a heart attack while he was in physical therapy at TIRR Memorial Hermann at the Texas Medical Center.

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Deputy Whitten was recovering from being shot in the neck on May 29, 2019, while confronting Pavol Vido, 65.

Murder suspect, Pavol Vido, accused of shooting a Liberty Co. Deputy in May 2019.
Murder suspect, Pavol Vido, accused of shooting a Liberty Co. Deputy in May 2019. (KPRC)

Vido was wanted in connection with a deadly shooting at the B Dependable plumbing shop on FM Road 321, near New Salem Road. Vido was suspected of fatally shooting a woman and then shooting two men at the plumbing shop.

Vido later committed suicide after a long search, officials said.

Whitten had been with the department for four years. He was off duty at the time of the shooting.

He is survived by his wife of 14 years, Kami Heard Whitten and their two children.

Liberty County Deputy Richard Whitten
Liberty County Deputy Richard Whitten (KPRC)

According to the Sheriff’s Office, Richard graduated from Splendora High School in 1986 and was a longtime resident of the Cleveland area. He later graduated from the Lone Star College Police Academy. Whitten is remembered as a man who loved to hunt and spend time with his family.

No details on funeral arrangements have been announced.

The Houston Police Department assisted Liberty County in a procession held for Whitten.

Watch: Officials remember the life of Liberty County Deputy Richard Whitten

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