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Man Killed, Deputy Wounded in Drug Raid

Posted January 4, 2008
Updated January 7, 2008

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— A man wanted in Texas died Friday after being shot at a north Raleigh home as Wake County deputies and alcohol enforcement officers served a search warrant, authorities said.

Meanwhile, a deputy shot during the incident was treated at WakeMed and released.

The shooting occurred shortly before 10 a.m. at 5401 Alpine Drive, near the intersection of Falls of Neuse and Millbrook roads in north Raleigh, authorities said.

More than a dozen law enforcement officers were serving a search warrant at the Alpine Drive home as part of a two-month investigation by Wake County Alcoholic Beverage Control Board officers into an alleged indoor marijuana-growing operation, authorities said.

"We did make a forced entry into the house. Shots were fired," Sheriff Donnie Harrison said.

Stephen Scott Thornton, who authorities said was using the name Scott Monaco, was shot inside the home and died at WakeMed a few hours later.

Thornton, 45, was wanted in Texas on drug and firearms charges, authorities said. The U.S. Marshal's Service had a full extradition order in place to return him to the Dallas area upon arrest.

Sgt. Ronnie Byrd, a member of the Wake County Sheriff's Office Special Response Team, was shot in the leg. Byrd, 37, has been with the Sheriff's Office since 1997.

Neighbor Richard Walden said he heard four or five gunshots and screaming inside the house, which he said has been a rental property for several years.

"It was very loud. I didn't want to venture any closer to find out what was going on and with whom," Walden said.

Harrison declined to say how the shooting unfolded – who fired first and whether Thornton had been shot by a deputy.

"The SBI is handling that," he said, adding that Thornton's body had been sent to the State Medical Examiner's Office in Chapel Hill for an autopsy.

A full-scale search of the residence was put on hold until State Bureau of Investigation agents completed a review of the shooting. But authorities said they saw marijuana plants inside the home.

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  • retired and luv it Jan 5, 2008

    This is another case of the results not fitting the crime. One dead and another shot. He just as easily could be dead too. This is similar to the recent car chase that took 3 lives over speeding in Franklinton. I m all for the police getting the thugs off the street but there has to be some constraint and solid evaluation of each situation on it s own merits. Billy Graham would probably grab a gun too if he had one if someone came yelling through his front door. Put youself in the same situation given little if any time to think or respond in the event you might just be innocent of anything but living at the wrong address.

  • syracuseinwonderland Jan 5, 2008

    "If a person is not taxed for services not rendered, then they should be charged back taxes if they break the law." Rocknhorse

    What if the back taxes didn't cover the costs?

  • davidgnews Jan 5, 2008

    I'd like to see them have the guts to do this at a crack house! Why do I never hear news stories about that ?????

  • montyburns Jan 5, 2008

    If this story turns out to be this guy was growing pot for his personal use and the trigger happy police knowing he has weapons in his house from his previous charges bust down his door and kill him i would not be suprised in the least.

  • Rocknhorse Jan 5, 2008

    " "What is your argument for not paying taxes?" leo-nc

    Taxing for services not rendered is wrong."

    Going along with that philosophy, then the converse should be true as well. If a person is not taxed for services not rendered, then they should be charged back taxes if they break the law. There is investigation involved before a person is arrested. There are costs involved with bringing charges up against someone, obtaining warrants, arresting, etc.... So by the logic demonstrated by these comments, if you get a tax break by refusing service, then you should conversely be charged back taxes if you create a strain on those same services.

    I don't think I want our safety service professions to become a pay-as-you-use program.

  • syracuseinwonderland Jan 5, 2008

    "What is your argument for not paying taxes?" leo-nc

    Taxing for services not rendered is wrong.

  • john283594 Jan 5, 2008

    Stephen Scott Thornton
    My name is Stephen Scott Thornton. I am 42 years old and am a MPS/chronic pain patient (Myofacial Pain Syndrome) and a thyroid cancer survivor. I have a M.S. in organic chemistry from Georgia Tech and have grown marijuana hydroponically for about ten years. My surgery to remove my thyroid gland was exactly ten years ago. I have smoked and grown marijuana since then and it helped me go from a 145-pound weakling to a 180-pound healthy man. I also lifted weights and used anabolic steroids including testosterone by prescription. I recently got busted by the feds and am getting ready to start a prison sentence for an unknown length of time. Most of my property was seized, two automobiles, 5 guitars, recording equipment and to add insult to injury, one of the police stole my dress pants (8 pair). It took me about 8 years to truly achieve a state of health and I am afraid I will lose it in prison since I won t be able to eat 4000 plus calories a day and weight train. I

  • john283594 Jan 5, 2008

    All this over a guy growing a plant...

  • leo-nc Jan 5, 2008

    "can pay back taxes." leo-nc

    And how would you justify that?"

    If they get caught, then the system should be able to recoup the cost. Kind of like paying attorney's fees. What is your argument for not paying taxes?

  • Rocknhorse Jan 5, 2008

    "I want cops who are brave enough to give the suspect's peaceful cooperation a chance. Knock, give a moment for him to come to the door, and if he answers peacefully and in a reasonable amount of time, give him the opportunity to read the warrant and surrender of his own will. If this doesn't work, THEN move in on him. Isn't that how you would prefer to be treated if you ever became a suspect?"

    How many true "career-criminals" (esp. those with past records of violence) will peacefully surrender to the police? If the police have sufficient evidence to gain arrest and search warrants against someone, I would think that person would try to resist or escape. IF the person is innocent and completely unaware of WHY police would be at his/her door, then they would answer and cooperate. If they KNOW why the police are there, they will more than likely do anything BUT cooperate.

    I want cops who are brave enough to do their jobs in spite of constant public criticism.

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