Drivers Stop To Save Cop From Bleeding To Death After Being Shot On The Highway.
This is the shocking moment an Oklahoma police officer is almost killed when a suspect opens fire during a traffic stop – but is saved by passersby who stop to lend a hand.
Officer Brian Southerland stopped a pickup on Interstate 240 near Eastern Avenue at 5:30pm Sunday, but as he approached the vehicle, the driver – identified as Cory Lee Hartsell – let loose a volley of shots.
One of those hit Southerland in his femoral artery, and could have caused the officer to bleed to death if a pair of Good Samaritans hadn’t stopped to find out what happened, News9 reported.
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The video, released by Valley Brook Police Department, shows Southerland pulling over what police say is Hartsell’s truck after he spots it clipping the curb, with a tail light out.
Hartsell, a gang member with a substantial criminal background, had a warrant out against him at the time of the arrest.
The truck pulls over, and Southerland is almost upon the vehicle when a series of shots ring out. He ducks for cover, but isn’t able to escape one of the bullets.
It’s not clear which one hits him, but he’s left wounded and on the ground by the right-hand side of his vehicle.
The video then cuts to some time later, as the car of an unidentified passerby parks in front of Southerland’s vehicle.
An apparently elderly man exits his car, sees Southerland’s injuries and then runs back to his own vehicle.
A second man arrives on the scene as the older man fetches a rope for use as a tourniquet.
The older man is also seen fetching a stick – presumably to twist the rope tighter on the officer’s leg.
Finally, after an agonizing wait, an Oklahoma County Deputy arrives on the scene with a medical tourniquet, and is able to staunch the bleeding fully.
Southerland has undergone two bouts of surgery and is now on the path to recovery, police say; a GoFundMe page has been set up to help pay for his medical care.
Hartsell, meanwhile, was hunted down and arrested in another traffic stop by officers from several agencies.
He had made a Facebook call to the owner of the truck he was driving, asking the man not to call the police, according to his arrest warrant.
The truck owner didn’t know Hartsell and hadn’t given him permission to take the vehicle – they were connected through a mutual friend who helped police identify him.
Hartsell was booked into Oklahoma County Jail on counts of shooting with intent to kill and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. He remains there in lieu of $500,000 bail.
His felony convictions stretch back to 2008. In 2013 he was sentenced to five years in prison after being convicted of larceny, possession of meth and entering premises with intent to steal copper. He was released from jail in August.
By JAMES WILKINSON FOR DAILYMAIL.COM