HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A Harrisburg police officer who shot and killed an armed man following a 2017 shooting spree that targeted law enforcement in the city has been awarded the Congressional Badge of Bravery.
U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey presented the award to Officer Chad McGowan on Wednesday.
The Congressional Badge of Bravery honors exceptional acts of bravery in the line of duty by federal, state, and local law enforcement officers.
McGowan and a state trooper confronted and killed Ahmed el-Mofty in an exchange of gunfire after el-Mofty fired shots at several law enforcement officers on Dec. 22, 2017, authorities said.
“Clearly risking his own life and saving lives in the process,” Toomey said. “That’s exactly what we ask police officers to do and that’s asking a lot.”
McGowan says he’s honored and humbled, and added that he didn’t act alone.
“I just want to reiterate this was a total team effort on this day,” he said. “I had multiple partners in the car, Harrisburg officers, Dauphin County officers. The state police showed up and helped. This was a total team effort.”
Authorities said el-Mofty, of Steelton, fired four shots into a Capitol Police officer’s vehicle as their cars passed on North Third Street and later drove up behind a state trooper and opened fire on her vehicle, striking her with one shot that caused a minor injury.
When police stopped the Hyundai minutes later at 17th and Mulberry streets, they said el-Mofty immediately stepped out of his car and began firing as he approached the officers. He then returned to his vehicle, possibly for more ammunition, and was fatally shot, officials said.
Police later found about 500 rounds of 9mm ammunition on or near him as well as two propane cylinders, including one in a fanny pack strapped around his waist.