Texas sheriff's sergeant dies in crash after funeral escort

Sgt. Bruce Watson had just finished an off-duty job leading a funeral procession, the sheriff's office said

Duty Death: Bruce Watson - [Texas]

End of Service: 01/02/2021

By Alejandro Serrano
Houston Chronicle

HARRIS COUNTY, Texas — A Harris County sheriff's sergeant who previously served in the Army died Saturday afternoon when a driver crashed into his motorcycle on his way home from serving as a funeral escort in the Pearland area.

Bruce Watson, a 20-year veteran of the county, was headed home around 1:15 p.m. when a passenger vehicle collided with his motorcycle near Kingsley Drive and Shadow Creek Parkway, according to Sheriff Ed Gonzalez and Pearland police. Watson was taken by helicopter to Memorial Hermann Hospital, where he died despite doctors attempting "all types of lifesaving measures," Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez said he did not know who the funeral was for but believed it was extra work Watson had picked up.

He described the 51-year-old as a wonderful man who trained new deputies in the office's academy and served as a field training officer. Most recently, Watson worked the night shift at the emergency dispatch center.

Before joining the county in March 2000, Watson served in the military, where he also rose to the rank of sergeant, Gonzalez added.

"It's a sad day," Gonzalez said outside the hospital, flanked by law enforcement officials. "Along his career, not only did he perform at a high level, but he also brought so many others behind him and he mentored them to be future leaders."

Watson's wife works in the Houston Police Department, where she's assigned to the major assaults and family violence unit. Watson, a father of three, had recently become a grandfather and proudly showed colleagues photos of his grandchild from a recent visit, Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez was traveling to another crime scene when he learned of the collision and detoured. He announced the law enforcement officer's death shorty after 4 p.m. in a tweet.

"Not the outcome we prayed for," Gonzalez said. "Please keep his family and our agency in your prayers. May our brother Rest In Peace."

Officer Jason Wells, a spokesman for the Pearland Police Department, said no other injuries were reported and that officers found no signs of intoxication. Detectives were reconstructing the crash, which remained under investigation.


The Harris County Sheriff's Office is saddened to report the passing of Sgt. Bruce Watson. The 20-year department...

Posted by Harris County Sheriff's Office on Saturday, January 2, 2021

(c)2021 the Houston Chronicle

McClatchy-Tribune News Service


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