On Monday, the Columbus Police Department recognized two of its officers for their work reviving a shooting victim outside the Princess Theater early Sunday morning.
Officers Amanda Burrell and Andres Rodriguez performed CPR on Alexander Crowell after Crowell was shot in the back. Crowell now remains in stable condition, according to Fred Shelton, the interim police chief.
Burrell and Rodriguez were given “Chief’s Coins” by Shelton, who said the coins are a reward for officers who take heroic actions and “go beyond the call of duty.”
Burrell and Rodriguez received the call about shots fired at around 12:20 a.m. Sunday morning and were at the scene within a minute, according to representatives from the CPD. Both Burrell and Rodriguez described seeing a crowd around the victim.
“It was chaotic,”Burrell said. “People running everywhere.”
She and the other first responders pushed through the crowd where they found the victim lying face up and not breathing, she added.
“I told Officer Burrell to start chest compressions and I administered mouth to mouth,” said Rodriguez.
After three cycles of chest compressions and mouth to mouth, Crowell began to breathe again. The officers waited with the victim until an ambulance from Baptist Memorial Hospital-Golden Triangle arrived at the scene.
Crowell was transported to Baptist Memorial and was later air lifted to a hospital in Jackson where he remains in the intensive care unit, according to Shelton.
All officers with the CPD must be certified in CPR, said Rodriguez, who has been with the CPD three years. Still he had never needed to perform CPR on the job before.
Burrell has had to perform CPR several times over her 16-year career, including once at an apartment fire and once during a medical emergency.
“When you see something like that, instinct kicks in,” she said. “You’re trained to do it … You pretty much know what to do.”
Burrell emphasized that it’s essential that bystanders keep out of the way of officers and other first responders trying to perform emergency procedures and save lives.
“It’s part of what we do,” said Shelton. “(While) we serve and protect, we’re also trained to assist and help people in life-saving situations. This is one of the things we do. … We don’t know the names of people, we don’t know their circumstances, we don’t know their situations, but we’re always there to help.”
Both officers were wearing activated body cameras, Shelton said.
Police have arrested Quinton Deangelo Harris, 24, of 300 Swedenburg Circle, and charged him with aggravated assault with a weapon and felony possession of a weapon.
At Harris’s arraignment Monday, Municipal Judge Gary Goodwin denied bail to Harris because Harris is still under a hold by the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
Police are searching for another suspect in the case but have not released that suspect’s name.
University of Mississippi Medical Center, where Shelton says Crowell is believed to be, said Crowell is not on their public patient registry, according to Ruth Cummins, the hospital’s assistant director of media relations.
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