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Man Killed After Cutting off Deputy's Hand Was Minister

A man who was shot and killed after cutting off the hand of an east Alabama deputy sheriff trying to arrest him is being described as a minister who started a church and sang gospel music with his family.

The Rev. Curtis Watts helped build Shining Light Baptist Church in Clay County, and an obituary says he performed with his family as the Watts Family Singers.

Sheriff's officials say Watts swung a bush ax while being arrested last Friday and cut off the right hand of Jason Freeman, a sergeant with the Clay County Sheriff's Department.

Freeman has undergone two operations. His hand has been reattached.

The preacher was being arrested on a charge stemming from domestic violence allegations.


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