Wounded in the Line of Duty
Several months ago, Boston Police Officer Shawn Marando and two other officers responded to a 911 call from a woman reporting that her boyfriend, later identified as Tyrone Cummings, 25, had assaulted her and was threatening to kill her.
When Officer Marando and fellow officers arrived on scene, Cummings was outside with a woman believed to be the victim’s sister and opened fire on them. He shot Marando in the leg. Marando and another officer returned fire, hitting Cummings multiple times.
Click here for the Boston Herald account of this incident:
Officer Shawn Marando, a Law Enforcement Today.com member wrote the following to TEAM LET:
“I think the Boston Herald wrote a pretty great article on that incident, but I would like to add;
There are a few things that I would point out from this incident that might save the lives of other first responders out there. I say first responders because, although I am a police officer, this would pertain to all of us in this same field. EMT’s, Paramedics, Police, & Deputy Sheriffs. We all respond to incidents where there is safety in numbers.
On this given day, we were within 45 minutes of the end of our shift when the call came in. We work the overnight shift, and while other officers were busy on paperwork from the nights calls, or even ‘holding calls’, integrity kicked in and we cleared up in case we were needed. It was within maybe 15 seconds of clearing the previous incident when we were issued this potentially fatal call. It seemed to us as just another ‘man threatening to kill his girlfriend’ call. To us, it seemed to be just another domestic violence call.
One additional officer took it upon himself to respond on his own to assist us in case it was needed. He had no idea that we were actually to become involved in a close quarter shootout, where one of us would end up being shot.
During this shootout, there were 13 rounds exchanged within 5-6 seconds and approximately 8-10 feet of the suspect and myself. A huge combination of luck, tactics and common sense kicked in, all at once. Tunnel vision, auditory exclusion and the feeling of it not even being real was a reality, it was not just a research paper or study that proved to be true.
The ‘oh sh–‘ factor kicked in and our bodies reacted on their own jumping into survival mode within micro seconds.
All and all, I would say that based on the outcome of the incident, and that we managed to survive that day with ‘minor’ injuries, we were the right team to have been sent to that call. It could have been so much worse. The shooter was on a mission. He woke up that morning, loaded two firearms, added additional ammunition to his pockets and had his daily fill of crack cocaine before he set out to kill the pregnant woman who was soon to be mother of his child.
So, when you are feeling like it is close to the end of your shift and you are tired, and that call comes in when you think, ‘yeah it could be dangerous, but, they got it’, pertaining to that other unit that you have been working with for some amount of years now……remember that saying, ‘Do unto others as you would like them to do unto you’. Save that report, get out of that chair, and see if your presence at that call might in fact save the life of your partner. We do not have to conduct a survey at my job, but just imagine how others might be feeling for not doing so that day. Don’t let it be you. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure….right? Although we did well that day, imagine if we were all killed? You can never bring back your deceased partners, but you may be able to prevent them from being killed if in fact you do respond. It is not how tough your partner might be, but it is the presence of your fellow co-workers that might make that armed suspect hesitate for even one second, which in turn enables you to take advantage of that one moment to regroup and react properly.
I was asked if there was anything I would have changed that day pertaining to tactics and our response. I would not have changed a thing. I am grateful for having my partners with me on that day. Their names are Officer Charbel Kamel and Officer Tim Denio.
I would also suggest officers start practice shooting their pistols from the proned position. Get low, get small. If I had not on that date, I might have been killed. I had no cover and that was all I could do, yet as a police officer, we had never practiced that at the range.
In closing, I could speak for days on this experience, but I would rather be open to questions and share my experiences with others to help them save the lives of themselves or their partners.
Please continue to be safe out there and be there for the other officers when you think, ‘They will be all set’.