This photo from the Kaufman County, Texas, website shows District Attorney Mike McLelland.
(CBS News) -- An intense investigation is under way in Texas where
Kaufman County District Attorney Mike McLelland and his wife were found
shot to death Saturday, just two months after one of McClelland's
prosecutors was shot and killed near his courthouse office.
District Attorney's Office will be closed on Monday and security will
be tight for other government workers in Kaufman, Texas in the wake of
the killings. The courthouse will be open but officials are promising
visibly tighter security. Multiple agencies, including the Texas Rangers
and the FBI are now beginning their search to hunt down the killer or
Investigators swarmed the Forney, Texas home of 63-year-old McLelland and his 65-year-old wife Cynthia.
Sources tell CBS News an unknown killer or killers used an assault rifle to commit the murders as early as Friday night.
County Sheriff David Byrnes had little to say but this: "It's unnerving
for the law enforcement community. It's unnerving to the community at
The murders come just two months after another
Kaufman County prosecutor, Assistant District Attorney Mark Hasse, was
gunned down in a parking lot just a block from the courthouse where he
That same day, McLelland stood firm at a news
conference after his prosecutor was murdered, sending an impassioned
warning to those who killed Mark Hasse. "We're very confident that we're
going to find you, we're going to pull you out of the hole you're in,
we're going to bring you back and let the people of Kaufman County
prosecute you to the fullest extent of the law," he said then.
-- an Army veteran who served for 23 years -- is said to have carried a
gun everywhere after the Hasse murder. In an interview with CBS News,
he seemed determined. Asked what part of the ordeal hurts the most, he
replied, "The fact that I can't reach out and grab somebody and do
something about it right now because I want them really bad."
murders have unnerved Kaufman residents. "You can't believe that this
thing would happen. Happened the first time but now it's happened
twice," resident Bryant Martin said.
The FBI, the Texas
Rangers and other law enforcement agencies have been looking into
possible connections to white supremacist groups who had been targeted
by McLelland's office.
CBS News senior correspondent John Miller, a former FBI assistant director, called the case "nearly unprecedented."
on this level of a prosecutor, aligned prosecutor and then the elected
county prosecutor, this is the kind of thing that they're used to in
Colombia and now in Mexico, not in Texas," he said.
Law enforcement investigating the case don't have much to go on, according to Miller.
the case of Mark Hasse, who was the deputy district attorney who was
shot first, he is leaving the District Attorney's Office, crosses the
street, walks to the DMV headquarters where he has his car parked. So
someone has done surveillance - where does he work and where does he
park, where is the best place to get him? There you've got one, possibly
two men, wearing black tactical vests, masks, weapons, they open fire
on him, kill him by his car, they leave in a silver vehicle, no shell
casings were recovered. That means they either used revolvers or in a
professional move, they picked up the shell casings before they left.
"Now let's move up to this case. In the case of D.A. McLelland ...
they clearly watched his home, they've seen the police car that was
there has been dropped, they enter the home. He and his wife are getting
ready for bed, they have assault-type weapon and there's shell casings
everywhere. She's shot once and he's shot numerous times but you don't
have the witness who sees anything," Miller said.
Asked if investigators have any idea who is doing this, Miller said
they've had ideas from the beginning, but none of those ideas are
"panning out readily." He explained, "That doesn't mean they won't come
around back and get a clue."
Miller said, "Let's start off with the red herring or the first idea
that comes in which is both men were involved in a case involving ABT,
Aryan Brotherhood of Texas, all-white prison gang. This was a major
sweep involving a bunch of district attorneys offices. There was a
threat put out in December against law enforcement who worked on that
case, and that is certainly the thing they looked at first, but they've
been looking at that since January, and nothing has really come up to
the fore with an informant, information taps or anything like that, to
point to that. So they are keeping an open mind and looking at
everything else, too."