Authorities use drone to fly inside home following deadly shooting in Lee County

When state and local law-enforcement officers arrived in the small town of Dime Box Tuesday night, the population doubled in a matter of minutes. 

Video of the large-scale multi-agency response was recorded by Giddings Times & News reporter Frank Smith.

"I didn’t see any chaos at all, it was very controlled, everybody was under control there was a definite procedure," said Smith.

Earlier in the day, authorities went to Dime Box looking for Raul Perez. He was wanted on a child sex abuse charge. Perez was found in a house on Stephen F. Austin Blvd. where some of his relatives live.

According to the Lee County Sheriff's Office, when a deputy and a state trooper tried to apprehend Perez, there was a chase. Shots were fired, and the deputy was struck in the neck.

On Wednesday, residents like Sally Cunningham spent the day hoping to get an update on the wounded deputy.

"Prayers, just prayers, gosh for his recovery that’s kind of brave and that warrant you never know what’s behind the door, wow it’s a big deal," said Cunningham.

The deputy is an investigator with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office and has been with the agency for about 10 Years. He was airlifted to Austin and was in surgery until early Wednesday morning.

At the house, authorities didn’t know if Perez was still alive. FOX 7 was told at least two children were inside at the time of the shooting. 

When the shooting stopped, authorities did not immediately storm in. They didn’t use a rolling robot, instead, they flew in with a drone.

"Assistant police chief Steve Spencer, I have worked for him before on an event, he saw me and came over and said ‘hey do you have your drone,’" said Smith.

Smith, who is Drone Pilot, explained how authorities wanted to use the drone during the incident.

"He said ‘the back door is wide open, can you fly in.’ I said I can fly in, but I’m not sure about my technology," said Smith.

Smith’s drone didn’t get off the ground, but another one was available.

"A Texas Ranger had his drone with him and his technology was definitely better suited. And I told the sheriff that’s what you want right there," said Smith.

The DPS Drone flew in through the open back door and an open window, according to Smith. It provided critical tactical views without risking more lives. 

With the drone, Perez was found in a room dead from a gunshot wound. Texas Rangers are now doing a review of the incident.