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48 hours brings shooting, stabbing, burglary and a plague of feral cats to Killeen

Nobody was hurt in Austin’s high school shooting Monday night, but a discharged shotgun would lead to a much more tragic result 59 miles north of the city, only a few hours later.

At 11:19pm, police were called to an apartment in the 3400 block of Victoria Circle, Killeen. Inside they found Joshua M. Wyatt, a 22 year old soldier posted to Fort Hood, still alive but with a wound in his chest that had opened as a result of a shotgun blast. Wyatt would live a further 49 minutes, only to die before emergency services could bring him to the emergency airlift at Fort Hood. An autopsy will be performed at the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas; police are still searching for Wyatt’s killer.

A day earlier and it was a knife that claimed the life of another soldier, again in Killeen. Spc. David L. Middlebrooks, 20, of Marianna, Florida had served his country since 2007. He had deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom from June 2008 through June 2009. In this short time he had won multiple decorations and awards, including the Army Commendation Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon and the Overseas Service Ribbon.

Having survived danger on the battlefield, he lost his life at a party on 111 Prather Drive on Sunday. Police found his body in the front yard of the apartment complex shortly before 5am, and he was pronounced dead at the Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center at 6:50am.

Middlebrook’s remains will join Wyatt’s at the Southwestern Institute of Forensic Sciences in Dallas for an autopsy. However the man accused of stabbing Middlebrooks to death is already in custody: Donnie Kenneth Stevens Jr., a fellow soldier at Fort Hood is the only suspect, and has been remanded to Bell County Jail on $1 million bail.

Meanwhile Killeen Town Hall was raided by a burglar in a beanie cap early Monday morning. The town is also infested with a plague of feral cats.