By Joel Hillan
DENVER (CBS4)– Some officers at the Denver Police Department were recognized for going above and beyond the call of duty.
For police, some calls don’t always go as planned. Like last April when Denver Police Officers Diaz, Stack, Kirby and Tinnin were cuffing a suspect in Civic Center Park.
“Officer Stack, now Sergeant Stack says he hears a ‘Click’ and I was thinking it was the handcuffs clicking and then he’s like, ‘He’s on fire!’”
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The man had dowsed himself in lighter fluid before the officers arrived. That click had been a lighter.
The officers used their bare hands to extinguish the flames.
Thursday afternoon the four received the Medal of Valor award through the nonprofit Denver Police Foundation.
“It’s nice to be recognized when you do something good,” said Officer Robert Greaser.
He was recognized for his part in providing support for then Officer Rachel Eid on a burglary arrest after a second suspect had taken off.
Detective Eid explained to fellow police officers what happened next.
“I’m running at him and he’s shooting at me and I’m shooting at him and then I feel one of the rounds hit me in my left ankle,” said Eid.
Greaser was full of emotion when he heard the shots, “Anger, urgency, hoping that she’s going to be okay, trying to do everything you can to stop them from hurting anybody else.”
He would end up ramming a car the suspect had just hijacked, ending the chase. Eid was rushed to Denver Health with serious injuries.
Greaser, Burke, Cooper and Clark received the Medal of Valor, while Eid received the Medal of Honor and Purple Heart.
Several other officers were awarded the Preservation of Life award at the ceremony in a banquet room of the Embassy Suits across from the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver on Thursday.
This award was initiated last year and is given by the Chief of Police to an individual on the force who goes above and beyond to preserve the life of another during a dangerous encounter.