Off-duty Harris County deputy killed in crash after completing shift, sheriff's office says

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Sunday, February 11, 2024
Off-duty HCSO deputy killed in major crash in downtown, officials say
A veteran Harris County Sheriff's Office deputy died after crashing on Travis near Richmond Street in Houston's Midtown, officials say.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- An off-duty deputy with the Harris County Sheriff's Office died in a major crash on Saturday, according to investigators.

The Houston Police Department said the deadly crash happened at about 9:45 p.m. in Midtown, which is southwest of downtown.

A witness told police the deputy lost control of his vehicle and wrecked on Travis near Richmond Avenue.

Authorities said 62-year-old Ronald Bates was taken to Ben Taub Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said it's a tough night for the agency, who lost a veteran.

"(Bates was) a man that was very much loved and respected by all. Just everybody was reminiscing about different conversations. They say he was a great father, a great husband, and a great mentor, a great friend," Gonzalez said. "We're united as a family to try to surround his immediate family with a lot of love and support as best we can - as we grieve also."

Gonzalez said Bates was with the agency for more than 30 years and touched many people's hearts throughout his career.

"We ask for prayers for his family. For the family of Deputy Bates. He was a great man and loved by many. He's going to be missed. He definitely left a mark on this agency, and we're going to do everything we can to support the family, as they go through their grieving process," Gonzalez said.