School Security Officer Killed at Halls High School, Suspect Arrested

Halls, Knox County (WVLT) - His duty was to prevent vandalism at Halls High School Halloween night, but that job has cost a Knox County School security officer his life.

Thirty-nine-year-old Russell Kocur died in the ambulance on the way to UT Medical Center last night.

He was shot in the back just after 10:30 last night, after radioing in that he'd spotted a suspicious, and possibly intoxicated man on the halls campus.

Moments later, he radioed in that he'd been shot.

Sheriff's deputies swarmed the area, searching for the shooter, believed to be in Officer Kocur's car.

They stopped that car after a chase, at I-275 and Oldham.

They say the suspect put up a fight and had to be tazered to get him into custody.

Officer Kocur was unarmed.

He wasn't wearing a protective vest last night, though he apparently had one available to him.

Officials say he was one of only about half a dozen school security officers not licensed to carry weapons.

"Other than just physical security of the property and of the students, he also would help with directing traffic from one side of campus, back and forth, one side of the street to the other," Knox County Schools spokesman Russ Oaks says.

Sheriff's investigators will say little about their suspect yet, other than that he is from Virginia, and has an extensive criminal record there. Reportedly, he has told them he is homeless.


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