Havelock police officers injured in shooting honored

police honored

Havelock police officers, from left, Lt. Brian Borton, Sgt James Fahnestock and Patrol Officer Loren Boone, received Purple Heart Awards during Monday’s Havelock Board of Commissioners meeting.

Drew C. Wilson/Havelock News
Published: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 at 03:57 PM.

The emotion was clear in the voice of Havelock Mayor Jimmy Sanders as he recalled  the afternoon he heard that three of the city’s police officers had been shot while responding to a call.

Sanders had been at a funeral when the incident happened on Feb. 14 and had turned his phone off. When he got out of the funeral, he knew something was wrong. He had emails, texts and voice mails on his phone.

"The first voice mail that I got was from the city manager and he said that we’ve had three officers shot. Two are en route to the hospital. I do not know the condition of … ." Sanders paused and was emotionally moved in recalling receipt of the message. "… I thought … what a senseless act … what a senseless act … I was afraid of the worst."

Lt. Brian Borton, Sgt. James Fahnestock and Patrol Officer Loren Boone were presented non-military Purple Hearts Monday night as nearly the entire police force and a standing-room only crowd including the officers’ families watched at the beginning of the Havelock Board of Commissioners meeting.

Havelock Police Chief G. Wayne Cyrus said the officers entered a closed room thinking they would be helping a man who had shot himself. Instead, the uninjured man, Richard Berry, began firing, hitting all three officers in their hands. Instead of pulling their own guns and firing back, they wrestled the two guns away from Berry.

Sanders said he was tremendously relieved when he found out the three would survive but then thought about what they did in that room.

"I think that’s testimony to you as individuals, to you as police officers, to the training and the command that you have, the chief and all of the officers," he said.

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