Amazing Stories From Cops On The Job (Don Ward)

By: Don Ward
By: Don Ward

We rarely get to hear them tell their stories.


He heard noise coming from inside the apartment. Without waiting for backup he went in...he had to.  Inside he found a man and his wife...he was on top of her, choking her with both hands.  Officer Colby Doolittle pulled him off and eventually tased him and arrested him.  The call for help had come in from A 12-year-old girl who told the 911 operator that her father "was hurting everyone."  If Officer Doolittle hadn't arrived and intervened, who knows what may have happened in that home. 

That's just one of the stories hundreds of us got to hear Wednesday at the Colorado Springs Police Department's Medal of Valor ceremony. 

We heard from Officer Cristen O'Connor about the day she didn't make an arrest..but she sure did make a difference.  She went to a traffic accident on I-25...a car was on fire, a man was trapped inside.  In the video piece that was played at the Broadmoor International Center...Officer O'Connor told the story.  The elderly man couldn't be pulled from the one who was trying to help him could get his seat belt off.  The officer carried a pocketknife..for this very reason. She reached into the car, into the very flames and cut through the belt. She and some others pulled the man out of the burning car and away from the burning car,  in case there was an explosion.


We heard the inside story of Sergeant Ronald Sheppard.  He had to take down a wanted man because that man was trying to kick in doors at an apartment complex and may well have taken hostages.  When ordered to stop that man pointed a gun at Sgt. Sheppard. The Sergeant fired, eventually the suspect died. He had a split second to make a life-or-death decision. 

They all face that very real possibility every time they go to work.  There were 7 officers honored with either the Distinguished Service Award or the Medal of Valor.  Every one of them earned it.  Every one of them had a harrowing tale of heroism.  What's unusual is that during this event, taped pieces are aired..the officers talk about the day they earned the awards, at length, in their own words. I got to hear all the stories because for the 5th year my 11 News Co-Anchor Shannon Brinias and I were the Emcees for the event. We're always proud to be part of this one.


You can hear all their first-hand accounts too.  We always air the ceremony on KKTV 11 News as a special called "Of Service And Valor"  It'll be on TV on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.  I'll remind you again before then.

As the ceremony wrapped up I summed it up as follows.

These men and women don't typically tell their stories outside their own ranks.  One thing you notice, start to finish, is how humbly they speak about the things they did...things most of us could never do.  So our congratulations go to all of the award recipients, and our gratitude goes to every member of the Colorado Springs Police Department.

We'll talk again soon.

Don Ward



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