Officers honored for Target shooting response

Officer Charles Jones, Officer Lindsey Totem, and Officer Josh MacMonagle were recognized for their bravery and disregard of personal safety while confronting the gunman (Apex Police Department)

June 21, 2010 4:07:53 PM PDT
The Apex Police Department has awarded three officers the Medal of Valor for their response to a shooting inside a Target department store late last month.

Officer Lindsey Tote, Officer Josh MacMonagle and Officer Charles Jones were recognized for their bravery and disregard of personal safety while confronting the gunman.

Sunday May 30, 67-year-old Mervin Carroll Mims went to the store on Highway 55 and murdered ex-girlfriend Guadalupe Rosas. He fatally shot himself in the head when officers confronted him inside the store.

Tote told ABC11 Monday about the mayhem she and the other officers found when they got to the store. They had to try and figure out who was the shooter and who was just a bystander in seconds.

"Anyone who's not involved, get them out the door as quickly as possible. Anyone who is involved, just try to get them to put down the weapon and go from there," she said. "It was very frantic, mayhem, people running all over the place, running out of every door they can find."

Tote said Mims was sitting down when they found him.

"…very calm and collected and that's when all three of us started challenging him to show me your hands," she recalled "…There wasn't a whole lot of time before he actually shot himself."

MacMonagle said much the same.

"Didn't look at me, didn't make any motion, was staring straight ahead real calm. Took his hand out of his lap, revealed a pistol, and as soon as I could see it, he put it straight up to his head and took his life," he said.

The officers said their training kicked in that morning and they don't feel like heroes.

"We happened to be the first three to show up and the first three to go in. Had it been any other officer, they would've done the same thing," said MacMonagle.

"I just happened to be the person there at that time. I didn't do anything different than what anyone else would've done, it was just my turn to be there," said Jones.

Apex police said in a news release that the Medal of Valor is the highest award that can be given by the chief of police to any sworn member of the department.

The department also recognized the Apex Lowes store for their aid and support during the Target shooting. Police said the store gave support to officers and aid to the customers and employees of Target during and after the incident. Store manager Jackie Bunch was presented with a Citizens Medal.

It's the highest award that can be given by the chief of police to a citizen.

Also recognized for their efforts as the first officers on the scene at the Target incident were Corporal Michael Prince, Officer Dan Kotlarek, Officer Greg Bennett, Officer Matt Hunter, and Officer Chris Myers. Telecommunicator Beverly Beacham was also recognized for her outstanding performance in the 911 center. Captain Ricky Martin of the Wake County Sheriff’s Office was given a special award for going above and beyond with his assistance.

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