Hardin County Deputy Matthew Locke was shot and killed last weekend in the line of duty while responding to a domestic violence call. The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said Todd Alan Stricklin, 48 from Clifton, has been charged with first-degree murder after shooting the deputy just after 8:30 p.m. last Saturday.
Now, according to FOX 17 Nashville, District Attorney Matt Stowe is trying to get justice for the fallen deputy. His office is treating the investigation as a death penalty case.
“At first blush there appear to be aggravating factors in this case that’s why I asked the death penalty team to review it immediately,” Stowe said. “We are treating it as a death penalty case at this point until a final review is complete because we want to take extra care.”
Stowe’s team is looking at all the evidence, gathering Stricklin’s background information and determining if there were “aggravating factors.” That process usually takes about 30 days.
Matthew Locke is remembered as a law enforcement officer, soldier and “fearless warrior.”
Hardin County Mayor Kevin Davis released a statement following Locke’s death, which reads in part, “Deputy Locke was a deputy and soldier who served his community and his country with honor, courage, commitment, dedication and devotion. Deputy Locke was known to be a fearless warrior with a servant’s heart. Our community has lost a hero, and a family will never be the same, all because of this senseless tragedy.”
In an official statement, Hardin County Sheriff Johnny Alexander says in part, “We remember Deputy Locke for his selfless dedication, absolute courage and unparalleled commitment. Our country has lost a warrior. Our community has lost a hero. Our department has lost a brother. We will never forget Deputy Locke, and we are all forever in debt for his sacrifice.”
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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Tennessee Star and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Deputy Matthew Locke” by Hardin County Sheriff Department. Background Photo “Hardin County, Tennessee Courthouse in Savannah, Tennessee by Cohee. CC BY 3.0.