Ex-Trooper Suspected in Rush-Hour Shootings Dies

Brian Smith's family says their "prayers go out" to victims' families

The family of the ex-Utah trooper who is the main suspect in Monday's deadly rush-hour shootings in the Dallas area said their "hearts are heavy" after the 37-year-old died Wednesday night from complications stemming from a self-inflicted gunshot wound that left him in critical condition and on life support.

"The recent events involving Brian have been devastating for our  family," the family said in an email in what was their first public statement. "It's hard to imagine that the Brian we knew could be involved in such acts."

The statement was in the name of Smith's father, Benton Smith, of Preston, Idaho.

Former Utah state trooper Brian Smith died at Parkland Hospital after being removed from life support.

Smith had been in critical condition from a self-inflicted gunshot during a standoff with Garland Police Monday night.

"Our hearts are heavy and our thoughts and prayers go out to those who have lost a loved one," the family wrote in an email. "Brian was a loving and dedicated son, husband, father and friend. He will be missed."

Smith's death comes hours after police shut down part of Interstate 635 in northeast Dallas  to look for evidence in the Monday crime spree.

Dallas Police homicide detectives along with the physical evidence officers combed Westbound I-635 from Garland Rd. to Plano Rd. from 10 a.m. to about Noon and found more evidence from the recent freeway shootings.  

Investigators will analyze the evidence found Wednesday to determine whether it is connected to the shootings.

Investigators also say Smith had an addiction to painkillers and was wanted for a North Texas crime spree.
He resigned in May as a Utah trooper after 12 years with the agency.
Lt. Craig Miller says police connected Smith to a killing in Dallas because the bullets from a standoff, which ended early Tuesday with the suspect shooting himself -- are a match.
Garland police are also investigating the fatal shooting of a motorist.
The crime spree appears to have begun in Garland, where a man police identified as Smith jumped over a pharmacy counter and stole Oxycontin pills.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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