Law enforcement officers are challenged daily in the performance of their duties; they face each challenge freely and unselfishly while answering the call to duty. In certain instances, their actions warrant special attention from their respective departments. The Bulletin also wants to recognize those situations that transcend the normal rigors of the law enforcement profession.
Sergeant Andrew Copeland and Officer Rodney Bamford of the Keizer, Oregon, Police Department responded to the scene of a motor vehicle crash. Upon arriving, they discovered an overturned vehicle in the street, adjacent to another vehicle engulfed in flames and an active power line down in the immediate area. The officers determined that the driver of the overturned vehicle was still inside. Sergeant Copeland and Officer Bamford attempted to assist the driver out of his vehicle, but he was uncooperative. The officers also were forced away several times by the intense heat emanating from the nearby burning car. Knowing that the overturned vehicle was in danger of catching fire and that the driver’s life was in jeopardy, Sergeant Copeland and Officer Bamford persisted, pulled him out of the vehicle, and moved him to a safe location. Fortunately, no injuries were sustained in the crash or during the rescue.
Conservation Enforcement Officer Timothy Joe Lindsey of the Alabama Department of Conservation’s Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries Division was off duty at a local airport when he witnessed the crash of a small plane holding a family of four. Though his wife and son were with him at the time, Officer Lindsey immediately drove to the crash site to provide assistance. Entering the burning and potentially explosive wreckage, he found a 7-year-old boy, the sole survivor of the crash, who was severely injured. Officer Lindsey’s quick and decisive action as a first responder enabled him to move the boy a safe distance away from the crash and ensure his survival. When EMTs arrived on the scene and the situation was stabilized, Officer Lindsey felt he was no longer needed and left the area without divulging his name to anyone. It was only due to local TV news footage that his identity was revealed. For his actions, he was awarded the Alabama Legislature’s Medal of Honor.
Nominations for the Bulletin Notes should be based on either the rescue of one or more citizens or arrest(s) made at unusual risk to an officer’s safety. Submissions should include a short write-up (maximum of 250 words), a separate photograph of each nominee, and a letter from the department’s ranking officer endorsing the nomination. Submissions can be mailed to the Editor, FBI Law Enforcement Bulletin, FBI Academy, Quantico, VA 22135 or e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.