The Bulletin notes – above the call of duty

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.

While working an evening shift, Officer Daniel E. Foito of the Clinton, Connecticut, Police Department responded to a call of a disturbance at a motel. As Officer Foito pulled into the parking lot, he was confronted by a young woman, who was 8 months pregnant and had been stabbed repeatedly in her abdomen, chest, and neck. When Officer Foito questioned her about what happened, the woman pointed to a man exiting one of the motel rooms. The suspect, the woman’s boyfriend, was covered in blood that was a mixture of the woman’s and some that came from a self-inflicted knife wound across his throat. He held a knife wrapped in bloody hair pulled from the woman’s head. As the suspect approached and advanced toward them, Officer Foito pushed the woman behind him, shielded her with his body, and retreated across the parking lot. Drawing his weapon, Officer Foito repeatedly told the suspect to drop the knife. He activated the laser sighting system attached to his weapon, and the red dot appeared as a warning on the su spect’s chest. The suspect ignored the warnings and continued to approach Officer Foito and the woman. Backed against a large trash bin, Officer Foito and the woman were unable to retreat further, while the suspect continued to advance toward them. When the suspect was within a few feet, Officer Foito fired his weapon and fatally wounded the suspect. The woman was airlifted to a trauma center where she received medical treatment to her throat injuries, which affected her ability to breathe and speak. Subsequently, she delivered a healthy, unharmed baby boy by emergency cesarean section. Officer Foito’s courage in a dangerous confrontation saved the lives of two innocent victims.

Officer Tom Thompson of the Fife, Washington, Police Department was on patrol when he heard the faint buzz of the fire alarm at an apartment complex. After he got out of his car, he followed the sound to an upstairs unit in the building. He forced open the door and immediately became engulfed in smoke. Officer Thompson found the tenant, who was suffering from smoke inhalation and trying to extinguish a large grease fire with clothing. Officer Thompson brought the subject outside to safety, but when he turned around to get the fire extinguisher from his patrol car, the tenant had returned to his apartment. Officer Thompson went back upstairs and found the subject, who was in shock, carrying the hot pot of scalding grease in his arms. Officer Thompson ordered the subject to put down the pot. The tenant complied, but he already had received third-degree burns on his arms and chest. Officer Thompson escorted the subject outside again and officials took him to the hospital for medical treatment. Officer Thompson’ s selfish actions saved the life of the tenant and helped prevent the fire from spreading to additional units in the building.

COPYRIGHT 2002 Federal Bureau of Investigation

COPYRIGHT 2002 Gale Group