Retired Oak Creek police chief was anxious, nervous during temple shooting

WTMJ News Team

Retired Oak Creek police chief was anxious, nervous during temple shooting

CREATED Aug. 7, 2012

OAK CREEK- The Sikh temple shooting tragedy hits close to home for Oak Creek police.

Retired Oak Creek Police Chief Tom Bauer told TODAY'S TMJ4 Nick Montes he's not surprised that two police officers involved in ending the massacre are being called "heroes."

Oak Creek Police Lieutenant Brian Murphy is in critical condition after being shot while responding to this mass shooting.

"The day of this event I was more nervous than at any time in my law enforcement career," said Bauer.

Bauer, who was Oak Creek's police chief for 13 years, couldn't stopping watching news reports of the temple shooting.  "I was very anxious.  I know now what moms and dads and police wives and husbands feel like."

Police say Wade Michael Page killed six people.  He also shot three others including Lt. Murphy.

Bauer said that he wanted to get information as soon as possible.  "They told me minimum information - which they should - but they told me it was (Lt. Murphy)."

Lt. Murphy was one of the first officers on scene.  He was helping a shooting victim when he was ambushed by Page -- shot at least eight times.

Despite his injuries, Lt. Murphy told responding officers to help others first and stop the shooter -- and for that he's being called a hero.

"He knew what his injuries were, and if they were life-threatening he would have taken that aid," explained Bauer.

Page's rampage of violence ended after Officer Sam Lenda shot him.  Lenda is also being called a hero.

"I would think -- for (Officer Lenda) he was in complete control and knew what he was doing," said Bauer.

And Lt. Murphy's family says they are praying for his recovery and they thank everyone for the support.  They also give their condolences to the victims and their families in this tragedy.

 

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