A Wright County deputy shot in the line of duty last Friday morning has ties to Seymour.

Injured with a gunshot wound to the leg was Jim “J.J.” McCleary, the son of Jim and Mary McCleary, who are longtime former Seymour residents.

Jim McCleary is known to many in the community as a longtime employee and mechanic at Pennington’s Home & Auto on the south side of the Seymour square.

After being shot, J.J. McCleary was taken to a Springfield hospital for surgery.

He currently is recovering from the wound.

According to a news release from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, at 9:25 a.m. last Friday morning, officers from the patrol, the Wright County Sheriff’s Department and the Mountain Grove Police Department were attempting to serve a search warrant at a residence in rural Wright County, south of Mountain Grove.

“Upon approaching the residence, a male suspect confronted officers in the yard area of the residence,” the patrol release said. “This person produced a handgun and, after being told repeatedly to put the gun down, began firing at officers. They returned fire, fatally wounding the man.”

Killed was 58-year-old James C. Pinkston of Norwood.

During the exchange of gunfire, McCleary was shot in the leg by Pinkston.

“(McCleary) was transported to a Springfield hospital for treatment,” the patrol said.

According to a report from television station KY-3, the NBC affiliate in Springfield, upon arriving at the scene, McCleary demanded that Pinkston put his gun on the ground. Investigators say that’s when Pinkston fired a shot at McCleary, then McCleary fired shots back.

At the scene, per the KY-3 report, were five Wright County deputies, a Mountain Grove police officers at two patrol troopers.

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