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'We have an officer down': A look at the moments surrounding the shooting of a Cleveland police detective

After the detective was shot, one of his fellow officers applied a tourniquet on his leg to help save his life.

CLEVELAND — The scanner traffic surrounding Tuesday's shooting of a Cleveland police detective says it all.

Scanner: "Hold the traffic, it's 28th and Central. We have an officer down. An officer shot. If there is anybody able to assist with district three, they got an officer shot on 28 and Cedar. Every cruiser goes. Every police car goes."

Cleveland Police Patrolmen's Association President Jeff Follmer says Tuesday night was scary. The officer sustained wounds in the arm and the leg, and two responding officers were injured when their car was involved in a crash nearby.

But Follmer knows it could have been worse. 

"The stars lined up," he said. "Everybody did their job. They were cool and calm."

The incident started with a pair of detectives coming upon what they believed was a stolen Kia near the area of East 30th and Cedar Avenue. Suddenly, four suspects fled from the stolen vehicle. 

Scanner: "The car is on scene. It's a Black male, orange sweater, tags on his left hand."

The two detectives followed on foot. The suspect wearing a bright, orange jacket fired four shots, hitting one of the officers twice. 

Scanner: "Radio — send a car to 27th and Cedar in that parking lot. The Kia should be trashed out, the male who is shooting was the driver."

Another zone car arrives on the scene and administers first aid to the officer, including putting a tourniquet on. 

Follmer says Cleveland police officers are trained to apply tourniquets, which he describes as "short and simple that goes around the leg." The device is meant to stop the bleeding and likely saved the officer's life. 

Credit: Carl Bachtel

Tourniquets are the Cleveland Division of Police's zone cars. Some of the officers carry them with their gear.  But when it comes down to it, if bullets start flying, anyone is a target.  

"They (officers) have used them many times on civilians that have been shot," Follmer added. "It's been proven it will save a life."

Follmer says the police department is in serious need of more tourniquets, as there has been more of a need as violent crime continues to worsen in the city. Follmer and the rest of the police union hopes the city of Cleveland will allocate more money for the lifesaving device.

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