Washington, DC—The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has announced the selection of Master Police Officer Joseph Young of the Fredericksburg (VA) Police Department as the recipient of its Officer of the Month Award for June 2013.
Located in the nation’s capital, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a nonprofit organization dedicated to honoring the service and sacrifice of America’s law enforcement officers. The Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Program began in 1996 and recognizes federal, state, and local officers who distinguish themselves through exemplary law enforcement service and devotion to duty.
Officer Young, along with the other Officer of the Month Award winners for 2013, will be honored at a special awards luncheon in Washington, DC in May 2014 during National Police Week. In addition, their stories of heroism and service will be featured in the Memorial Fund’s annual calendar.
- On the night of June 6, 2008 at approximately 11:00 pm, Officer Young was dispatched to the home of a female victim who had called 9-1-1 after her estranged boyfriend appeared at her apartment, brandishing a gun and threatening to kill her.
- Just before officers arrived, the suspect fled the scene. Approximately 20 minutes later, he was found sitting in his vehicle in a shopping center parking lot, less than one mile from the apartment. After a short chase, the suspect exited his vehicle and fired upon the pursuing officers as he ran for cover. Knowing how close he was to the victim’s location, officials gathered that he would eventually attempt to make his way back to the apartment.
- Officer Young alerted the other officers that he was at the apartment complex and would secure the victim and her family in the apartment. Once he was confident that the victim and her family were safely barricaded in an interior room, Officer Young positioned himself on the second floor stairwell of the apartment complex and waited. When the suspect appeared, he opened fire on Officer Young, who returned fire and struck the enraged suspect. The suspect was not critically wounded, but he subsequently took his own life.
- Later it was learned that in the initial volley of gunfire—after the gunman had abandoned his vehicle—Officer Young’s friend and colleague, Officer Todd Bahr, had been fatally shot. Although Officer Bahr tragically lost his life, Officer Young’s actions that night undoubtedly prevented such tragedies from happening to fellow officers and innocent civilians.
Commendations and Volunteer Work
- Officer Young was nominated by his fellow officers to be a member of the Peer Support Group, a group of dedicated officers who vow to help department members and their families in times of need.
- Since 2007, Officer Young has served as a volunteer Field Training Officer for new police recruits.
- Officer Young is a member of the department’s Honor Guard and a former counter-sniper for the department’s Special Equipment Tactical Team.
- ”The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is honored to present Master Police Officer Joseph Young of the Fredericksburg (VA) Police Department with our Officer of the Month Award for June 2013. Although his colleague Officer Bahr tragically lost his life, Officer Young’s actions in June of 2008 undoubtedly prevented more tragedy from happening to fellow officers and innocent civilians,” said Craig W. Floyd, Memorial Fund Chairman & CEO. “He is most deserving of this Officer of the Month Award.”