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Cop Killer From 2008 Harris County Incident Released From Mental Hospital This Week
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Cop Killer From 2008 Harris County Incident Released From Mental Hospital This Week

by Leah AnayaDecember 17, 2020

Harris County, TX – In 2008, 47-year-old Officer Gary Gryder was killed while working a construction road block when 35-year-old Hung Truong crashed his car into the officer and his partner, Fred Pyland. Officer Pyland suffered a broken leg, and Truong said he crashed because he was “hearing voices.”

Truong was charged with manslaughter. At his hearing in 2009, Truong was found not guilty by reason of insanity. He was sent to Rusk State Hospital where he stayed until his release this week.

In 2019, Judge Mark Kent Ellis saw evidence from Truong’s attorney at an annual hearing on the matter, including testimony from Truong. The judge ruled that Truong would remain in the hospital for at least another year.

After that hearing, Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said, “It is important to the victim’s family, and all of us, that the public remains safe from this violent offender, who has been found to be insane, when an appropriate facility is not available for him here in Houston.”

 

Assistant District Attorney Bradford Crockard, assigned to the mental health division, said at the time, “We applaud the judge’s decision. We believe it is in the best interest of public safety that this man be kept off the streets and in a place where he can get proper treatment.”

Ogg’s office said following the ruling, “Prosecutors have kept Truong off the streets by repeatedly showing a judge that the public is protected by keeping him at Rusk.”

This past Wednesday, Truong was apparently no longer considered a risk, and he was released from the mental hospital.

Houston Police Officer’s Union President Douglas Griffith said in a statement after the release, “It is hard to believe, but today the courts have decided to release Hung Truong from Rusk State Hospital. For those who do not remember, Truong killed Houston Police Officer Gary Gryder and seriously injured Houston Police Officer F.J. Pyland.”

Griffith said that Crockard fought to keep Truong in the hospital, “where he belongs,” to no avail. Griffith also said that Truong will be living in Harris County precinct 4 and that law enforcement agencies in the area would coordinate to be sure they are always aware of his location.

The Harris County District Attorney’s Office Truong was granted the release because he said he had a place he could live, and he will wear a GPS monitor at all times.

Griffith asked the public to keep Officer Gryder’s family in their prayers following this tough news.

About The Author
Leah Anaya
Leah Anaya
Leah Anaya is a medically retired police officer. She served for three years at the Oakland Police Department, and just under five at a department in Washington State. Before that, she was an intelligence analyst in the US Army. She is now a stay at home mom living with her husband, who is still serving as a police officer, and their three children. She also grew up as the daughter of a police officer in California. Leah is now a writer and Deputy Editor at Law Enforcement News Network as well as the Business Manager for Washington State FOP. She's a peer support advocate for The Wounded Blue and Serve and Protect. You can find her on social media @leahmsanaya or at www.leahanaya.com.
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