Florida – Law Enforcement Today has received reports that a Florida officer was severely wounded on Saturday night in a crowded tourist section of Miami Beach.
Here’s everything we know so far.
According to a report from Local 10, a Miami Beach officer who had been patrolling the busy beachfront area of the Entertainment District was stabbed multiple times in a confrontation with an armed suspect.
The officer was reportedly injured after reporting to a call for service at the Clevelander South Beach Hotel on Ocean Drive and 10th Street just after 9 p.m.
POLICE: Officer involved shooting at 10 Street and Ocean Drive . Avoid the area.
More info as it becomes available.
— Miami Beach Police (@MiamiBeachPD) January 12, 2020
When the officer made contact with the subject, he was attacked and stabbed with a knife. Officers drew their service weapons and returned fire, injuring the armed suspect.
The area was quickly shut down as investigators began trying to piece together the details of what led to the stabbing and subsequent shooting.
Both the officer as well as the suspect were transported to a nearby hospital. The suspect was last listed in critical condition, but authorities say the officer is in stable condition after undergoing surgery for the attack.
UPDATE: Our injured Officer is being treated at JMH with a stab wound. He is listed in stable condition.
— Miami Beach Police (@MiamiBeachPD) January 12, 2020
Neither the suspect nor the officer have yet to be identified by Miami Beach authorities, but a press briefing is expected on Sunday morning.
Police say the officer was lucky to escape with his life.
Miami Beach Mayor Dan Gelber commented about the officer’s brush with death.
“The officer is going to be OK, we believe,” Gelber said, noting that the wounded cop seemed to be in good spirits in the hospital.
He came out of surgery early Sunday and has been surrounded by friends and family since.
Police say that the officer was patrolling the popular tourist area as part of Operation Safe Streets, an initiative to increase officer visibility in the crowded district.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is investigating the details behind the incident.
Hours earlier in Texas, multiple emergency responders were killed while working the scene of a highway crash.
Two emergency responders were killed, and another was injured as they worked the scene of a crash in icy conditions Saturday morning on the north-side of Lubbock, Texas.
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One Lubbock police officer and firefighter died, and another firefighter was critically injured when another vehicle crossed a median and crashed into them as they worked a wreck about 8:30 a.m. on North Interstate 27 near FM 1294, said Lubbock police public information officer Allison Matherly.
The officer who died was identified as 27-year-old Officer Nicholas Reyna, while the firefighter who died was 39-year-old Lt./Paramedic Eric Hill. The critically injured firefighter is 30-year-old Matt Dawson, who remained hospitalized Saturday afternoon.
Hill had been with the LFD for 10 years, while Reyna had only been with the LPD for one.
Police Chief Floyd Mitchell and Lubbock Fire Rescue Chief Shaun Fogerson hosted a brief news conference later in the morning, going over the timeline of events and calling it a tragic day for Lubbock law enforcement and firefighters.
“The people who put on this badge (police), the people who put on that badge (fire), they give their life to their communities. We are true servants. To my family here in Lubbock, my police department and fire department family, our hearts go out to them,” Chief Mitchell said.
Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick issued a brief statement via Twitter in response to the loss of the first responders.
“Terrible news in Lubbock this morning. We have lost 2 brave first responders,” reads the statement. “As we await more news, please join Jan and I in praying for the Lubbock community and the families of these heroes.”
Lubbock Mayor Dan Pope and the City Council released a statement Saturday afternoon:
“Today our city grieves and expresses prayers for the loss of the two first responders who lost their lives today in the line of duty and to the injured fire fighter. This is a tragic event. Our hearts go out to the families and likewise to the brave men and women who serve in Lubbock Fire Rescue and in the Lubbock Police Department. Public service is a high calling, and we are indebted to those who serve and protect our lives and safety each and every day. I ask you to offer your prayers and comforting thoughts in light of today’s tragic events.”
Lubbock City Manager Jarrett Atkinson also released a statement, calling Saturday a devastating day for the city, LPD and LFR.
“Our public safety employees work day and night to protect us and are often required to place themselves in harm’s way. Today, we lost two of these heroes and a third is critically injured. We grieve with the families and loved ones of the police officer and fire fighter that were killed in the line of duty today. We also offer our support, assistance and prayers for our injured fire fighter, his family and loved ones. Please join us in supporting our police, fire and City families during this trying time.”
“This is a tragic day for our family. This is a tragic day for both police and fire and the men and women of both of our departments,” Chief Mitchell said. “When road conditions get this bad, we need to make sure that people understand that they need to slow down. They need to understand the road conditions are dangerous and we have people out there trying to protect them. Speed and road conditions are always a factor.”
Chris Kemp, president of the Lubbock Professional Fire Fighters Association, said updated information on Dawson’s condition will be updated throughout the day. The association will also update the public on Hill’s memorial service.
Both departments will have counselors available for the other first responders on the scene and for those who knew the officer and firefighter.
Flags at both department headquarters have been placed at half-staff.
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