In September 2010, officers of the Central Vice Control Section of the Cincinnati Police Department noticed members of a motorcycle gang at a local bar not known as a biker bar.
Police knew there had been skirmishes between rival gangs and “takeovers” of local bars in which a gang would lock it down and line up patrons to see if any belonged to a rival gang. There were warnings out, too, that a gang’s “enforcer” was in the area.
Police went to the bar to investigate. As they approached a section of the bar, the “enforcer” pulled a gun and started firing at the officers.
In the gunfire exchange, one officer was shot in the lower back. He was able to drag himself to cover, where other officers pulled him to safety.
Another officer was shot in the thigh but engaged the suspect in another volley of gunfire.
The “enforcer” died in the shootout. The two officers who suffered gunshot wounds eventually returned to duty.
That’s why the Central Vice Control Section of the Cincinnati Police Department received the Distinguished Law Enforcement Valor Award during an awards luncheon today, the last day of the two-day Ohio Attorney General’s Law Enforcement Conference in Columbus. In all, more than 40 individuals and groups were recognized for their distinguished work.
Those honored also included nine members of the Clark County Sheriff’s Office and Officer Jeremy Blum, of the German Township Police Division.
Clark County Deputy Suzanne Hopper and Lieutenant Dustin White were dispatched to a campground on Jan. 1, 2011. Occupants of a camper there reported that they had been sleeping when shots were fired into their camper.
As Deputy Hopper was photographing footprints in the area, a man came out of another trailer and fatally shot her. Hearing her call his name, and then the shot, Lt. White retrieved his patrol carbine from his cruiser.
Finding Deputy Hopper on the ground, he called for assistance. On- and off-duty officers and deputies from Clark, Greene, and Montgomery counties responded.
The suspect refused pleas to surrender and fired on officers at the scene. A gunfight ensued. Officer Blum was shot in the shoulder. He staggered into an open area. Clark County Sheriff Gene Kelly and Major Russell Garman ran into the firefight and dragged Officer Blum to safety.
When the shooting was over, the officers entered the camper and found the suspect dead.
To these officers and all who protect us, thank you.
For photos from the two-day conference, visit the Ohio Attorney General on Facebook.