Friday, October 24, 2014

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Officer Describes What He Saw When Arriving on the Scene

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Rochester: Officer Describes What He Saw When Arriving on the Scene
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Sergeant Kevin Hall arrived on the scene just after the first shots were fired. He spoke about what he saw, and what was going through his mind as he heard rounds fired, watched houses burn, and saw two firefighters laying on the ground.

"It was chaotic... the last thing you'd ever expect to see."

Sgt Kevin Hall, a 20-year Webster police veteran, said he had no idea what he was driving up to when he got to Lake Road in Webster on Christmas Eve morning.

"The only lighting in that area is the lighting in the homes, and at 4 in the morning, there is not a lot of that, you are surrounded by water it is dark very cold and very windy."

He said he did what he is trained to do and once Officer Mark Reed radioed it was gunfire, he grabbed his ballistic shield and went to help the first fireman he saw, Tomasz Kaczowka.

"I didn't know it was Tomasz and I thought that he was laying covering himself so I thought when I ran up I would pat him on the back and say 'let's get out of here' and he'd get up and we'd run away, and as soon as put my hand on him I realized that... that's when I retreated back to my vehicle and retrieved my weapon."

He radioed to Reed that he lost sight of the shooter and then backed his car up to the perimeter. He had no idea the other fireman down was fellow officer Michael Chiapperini.

"I remember thinking that we will get him out of there and at one point, we finally realized that that wasn't going to happen and everything just stopped for a minute because not only is it a fireman, but a fellow officer and a friend."

Hall says if it weren't for Officer Reed's actions, William Spengler would have killed more firefighters.

"He saved, I can't tell you how many lives he probably saved... He was absolutely heroic."

Hall says he worked straight through until New Year's Day. After one day off, he returned, where support for each other is greater than ever.

He says that's what "Chip" would have wanted.

"He would want us to push forward he believed in this department and what we did and he would want nothing else but for us to continue to do what we do."

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