A Closer Look at the Officer Killed in VT Shooting
Reporter: Dhomonique Ricks | Videographers: Ira Quillen & Daniel Heffner
Blacksburg, VA - So far, officials have released very little information about the victim in this alleged murder suicide. Deriek Crouse, 39, was a father, a fighter and a friend.
Law enforcement officers throughout the community have expressed their sadness about losing Crouse.
Friends say Crouse was known as a man of service. He served in the Army until 2005, and then continued his service within the community in another capacity.
Friends say he was the person who always wanted to make a difference in other people's lives.
"Dark cloud over the office. It's like that any time you lose an officer. It's even worse with an officer you actually worked with," said Chief Deputy Robert Hall from Montgomery Co. Sheriff Dept.
He was hired with the Montgomery County Sheriff's Department in February 2007, and worked there for 8 months before taking a position with Virginia Tech.
His former employer and good friend says Crouse took the job because he wanted to work in a patrol capacity, something the department didn't have openings for at the time. October of this year, the department had a patrol opening.
"Deriek actually came over here and we spent probably 30 minutes together that day and right here is an application that he had filled out to try to come back over here for a patrol position. Within the next few days probably I would have been calling him to set up interviews," said Hall. He said he was just tired of the small campus area and he thought he could do more work for a larger agency in the county.
But it was too little too late.
"I wish we could turn back time...and I had already hired him and had already gone through the process and had him hired," said Hall.
Friends describe Crouse as an exceptional employee that went above and beyond to help others. Hall says he was a laid back guy who graduated from VT.
There will be a vigil held in his honor on the drill field at VT Friday at 6:30 p.m.
University officials say the funeral service for Crouse will be held at 2 p.m. on Monday, December 12 at Cassell Coliseum.
The Crouse family will receive friends at the Horne Funeral Home on 1300 N. Franklin St. in Christiansburg, Va. on Sunday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.
People can leave online condolences at the Horne Funeral Home website.