Body camera footage from veteran Lavonia (GA) officer Captain Michael Schulman, 50, captured the moment that a suspect pulled a pistol from his pocket and shot both officer Schulman and officer Jeffery Martin, 22, and the horrifying moments afterward.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation confirmed a suspect was arrested after two police officers were shot in Franklin County Monday evening.
Chief Bruce Carlisle with the Lavonia Police Department said the incident started as a traffic stop near Jones Street around 8 p.m. He said the two officers noticed the vehicle which suspect and Greenville native 22-year-old Khari Anthony Gordon was driving had been reported stolen out of Greenville and went to arrest the suspect.
The suspect then shot both officers, according to the chief.
One of the victims is veteran officer Captain Michael Schulman, 50, who was shot in the arm pit area above his vest. The second officer, 22-year-old Jeffery Martin, was shot in the hand and will have to seek out a specialist to remove the bullet. Carlisle said Martin is an army veteran who has been employed by the department for less than a year. Schulman is married with two children. Martin is also married.
On Tuesday afternoon, Carlisle confirmed Jeffery Martin had been released from the hospital but would be having surgery in Athens on Wednesday for his hand, where a bullet is still lodged.
Schulman is still in the ICU at Greenville Memorial but is expected to be moved to a normal operating room after fluid is drained from a punctured lung.
The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office said Gordon took off on foot after shooting the two officers and a manhunt then ensued. A few hours later the GBI announced the suspect had been caught.
According to a GBI special agent, Gordon was charged with two counts of felony intent of murder, two counts of aggravated assault on an officer and possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime. More charges could be pending, investigators said.
The shooting of the officers was tough enough to watch. The utter confusion, indecisiveness, and clear lack of any idea how they could render self or buddy aid in the four minutes after they were shot was excruciating to watch, especially coming just weeks after I completed the SOB Tac Med Basic Trauma Management class, and I had to solve a very similar field problem.
It seems clear that Lavonia police are among the many law enforcement agencies who do not equip their officers with a IFAK (Individual First Aid Kit), or a single-day block of instruction on how to address immediate threats until EMS can arrive. This level of training isn’t rocket science. The class was built around Tactical Combat Casualty Care (TCCC) concepts, and focused on treating casualties according to the MARCH protocol.
MARCH stands for:
- Massive Hemorrhage
In this instance, Gordon shot Captain Schulman in the arm pit area and officer Martin in the hand. A quick examination of their injuries would have quickly determined that Captain Schulman had the more serious injury (a suspected bullet to the lung is an “airway” issue). A bullet wound between the collarbone and navel strongly suggests the possibility of a hit to a lung, so the application of a chest seal to the entrance wound to prevent tension pneumothorax would have been the correct response, followed by checking for an exit wound, which would be treated the same way.
Officer Martin’s hand injury (which was not an arterial bleed or massive hemorrhage, or else would have taken precedence), could have then been treated with a pressure dressing. They then could both be monitored until EMS arrived to take them to a trauma center for care.
I sincerely hope agencies look at what appears to be a rise in attacks on officers and lobbies their city governments to get gear and training which increasingly seems to be imperative. Each officer who steps foot in the field should both basic trauma management training and an IFAK to treat critical wounds in advance of EMS arriving to a scene.
These skills are not just important to have to treat gunshot wounds, but can be used by officers responding to the scene of home, industrial, and automobile accidents on those occasions when they arrive before fire and EMS.