HAYS COUNTY, TEXAS (KXAN) — A Hays County grand jury cleared a HCSO deputy in a November 2022 deadly shooting, according to a news release from Hays County Criminal District Attorney Kelly Higgins.

According to the release, the grand jury did not return an indictment in the matter.

On Nov 5, 2022, two HCSO deputies responded to the 100 block of Victoria Court, which is located in north Hays County, between Dripping Springs and Austin, the release said. The deputies were investigating a report of an intoxicated driver who crashed a vehicle and threatened a two-truck driver a few blocks away.

HCSO Deputy Mohammad Zaqzouq was one of the two deputies, the release said.

Body-worn cameras worn by both deputies captured events leading up to the shooting, the release said.

While speaking with the vehicle’s owner, Carol James, in the front yard of the home, deputies heard a woman screaming inside the home, the release said.

Zaqzouq approached the front door and heard James say, “He’s got a knife,” the release said. Then, John Samuel File, 28, was seen exiting the home moving toward Zaqzouq with a large knife in his right hand.

According to the release, Zaqzouq repeatedly shouted for File to show his hands, but he continued moving toward him with the knife. Zaqzouq fired his weapon at File, striking him three times.

File died at the scene, the release said.

One bullet also struck James, File’s grandmother, in the arm during the incident, the release said.

Higgins said the Texas Rangers conducted the investigation into the shooting.

“A grand jury is composed of twelve citizens from Hays County and serves as an
independent voice of the community. The Hays County Criminal District Attorney’s Office presented the results of the investigation. After hearing the evidence, the grand jury determined that the conduct of the deputies was justified under the law and voted not to indict. This matter is now closed. We would like to thank the Texas Rangers for their prompt and thorough investigation.”

-Hays County District Attorney Kelly Higgins