In a solemn moment for the San Marcos community, justice was served as the Capital Murder verdict for Stewart Mettz was delivered. The verdict, offering closure for the fallen Officer Kenneth Copeland, also brings relief to the entire San Marcos Police Department, Copeland's family, and the community he dedicated his service to.
Officer Kenneth Copeland, who joined the San Marcos Police Department in 1998, tragically became the first San Marcos officer to be killed in the line of duty on December 4, 2017. At the time of his death, Copeland was actively serving as a reservist with the United States Coast Guard Reserve in Corpus Christi.
Chase Stapp, Assistant City Manager and former Chief of Police during the incident, expressed his gratitude, stating, "Ken Copeland was a shining example of what it means to be a public servant in San Marcos. His demeanor and approach to his work set the example for so many." Stapp acknowledged the law enforcement personnel, prosecutors Kathleen Arnold and Allison Buess, and the jurors for their contributions to the case.
Sergeant Matt Daenzer, relieved by the verdict, praised Officer Copeland, saying, "Officer Copeland was the epitome of what an officer should be, and I’m glad he and his family can now rest a little easier knowing that his killer has faced justice."
Remembered for his exceptional service and community dedication, Copeland left a lasting legacy within the San Marcos Police Department. Corporal Brady Templeton expressed gratitude for the conviction but acknowledged the enduring loss. "Live like Ken!" Templeton urged, emphasizing Copeland's positive impact on the department.
The San Marcos Police Department extended their appreciation to the Hays County District Attorney’s Office for their commitment to resolving this case. The conviction may not erase the tragedy, but it stands as a solemn acknowledgment of justice served in Officer Kenneth Copeland's memory.