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May 2017

Officer David Brady

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)

Officer David Brady, of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC)

Washington, DC—The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has selected Officer David Brady, of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC), as the recipient of its Officer of the Month Award for May 2017.

On August 7, 2015, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Officer David Brady responded to reports of a disturbance on a sailboat in St. Andrew’s Pass near Panama City Beach in northwest Florida. Officer Brady made contact with the vessel from his patrol boat and asked the two male occupants for identification before the situation drastically changed.

When asked for an ID, one of the two men on the boat descended into the cabin and emerged with a handgun, shooting at Officer Brady. The officer returned fire before jumping overboard in full gear, using his patrol boat’s engines as cover. Officer Brady was able to shoot at the assailants several more times before being hit by a bullet on his side, which was stopped by his bulletproof vest. His life jacket was also punctured by a bullet that grazed his collarbone.

During the open water shootout, the assailants commandeered the patrol boat, using it to attempt to run over Officer Brady. The officer was also able to reload while floating in the water and dodging his own boat, shooting one of the suspects in the hand.

After the two men raced off in the patrol boat, Officer Brady flagged down a U.S. Coast Guard vessel, which transported him to an area hospital. He was treated for gunshot wounds and released.

A manhunt followed the shootout, and both suspects were captured just two hours after the incident, thanks to information given by local residents who saw the patrol boat hit a sandbar and its occupants run off.

“Officer Brady’s courage and tenacity can’t be denied,” FWC Executive Director Nick Wiley said. “We are so thankful that he survived this vicious attack. He is a shining example of the character and conviction that is shared by all of our FWC family.”

“The Memorial Fund often hears stories of the heroism officers show on a daily basis, and sometimes we hear stories of extreme valor that should never go unnoticed,” Memorial Fund President and CEO Craig W. Floyd said. “The remarkable situation of this shootout, from the officer’s willingness to jump into the water with all of his gear to his ability to reload his weapon in the water and injure one of the suspects, earns Officer Brady the Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award for May 2017.”

Located in the nation’s capital, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America’s law enforcement officers. The Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award Program began in 1996 and recognizes federal, state, and local officers who distinguish themselves through exemplary law enforcement service and devotion to duty.

Officer Brady, along with the other Officer of the Month Award recipients for 2017, will be honored during National Police Week at a special awards ceremony in Washington, DC, in May 2018.

Police Unity Tour The Police Unity Tour is the official sponsor of the Memorial Fund's Officer of the Month Program.