Heflin Police Officer still on the road to recovery - abc27 WHTM

Heflin police officer continues long road to recovery one year after being shot in the line of duty

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Heflin police officer Jackie Stovall was awarded a Purple Heart after being shot in the line of duty on December 15, 2012. Heflin police officer Jackie Stovall was awarded a Purple Heart after being shot in the line of duty on December 15, 2012.


One year after being shot and seriously injured during a wild, two-county chase with a man suspected in a triple homicide, Heflin police officer Jackie Stovall continues on his long road to recovery.

Jackie Stovall, recalls every detail on the day he could have lost his life.

"I look up and he's pointing a gun at me and the lady in the seat and I know he's going to try this shot, he's either going to hit her or me and I stepped out to take that shot."

He was trying to protect others at an Oxford intersection from a murder suspect running from police. "I remember looking down and seeing my leg, I said he got me."

Stovall says his leg was shattered. The bullet hit a main artery in the groin. He started praying before Trooper John Lewis arrived and helped save his life.

"What Trooper Lewis did was hold pressure on my leg for 8 minutes."

It's an emotional day - one year and six surgeries later. His wife, Wanda Stovall says "He's the love of my life."

She says they're finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Jackie says, "I can walk a little bit on the leg, baby steps. 3 or 4 steps at a time, it still really hurts."

Heflin Police Chief AJ Benefield says, "We hate seeing our brother have to suffer and go through all this."

Stovall says returning to work would be the best medicine. "I knew when I took this job, It will be 25 years in January, that this could possibly happen."

Benefield says, "If they hadn't had the training, none of them may have been here today."

Officers including Stovall recently received recognition for their efforts last year. Stovall received a Purple Heart and Medal of Valor from the City of Heflin.

Stovall says, "When we finish this day, I hope tomorrow we just start going on and having a normal life again."

Wanda says, "He's a true hero."

An infection in the leg has delayed his recovery. He has another surgery in February. Stovall says he will not be able to go back to work as a patrol officer, but will eventually take on a special job at the police department. He believes in his heart, he will be able to walk again without any assistance.







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