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Special Agent Richard Dobrich, Drug Enforcement Administration, Afghanistan

Law Enforcement Congressional Badge of Bravery

On February 14, 2010, the DEA’s foreign-deployed Advisory Support Team, along with Officers from the National Interdiction Unit, U.S. Army Special Forces, and the Afghan Army were conducting joint operations with the intention of searching for narcotics and weapons. The operation targeted the Taliban stronghold and narcotics growing, processing, and storage center.

Upon departing their secured locations, the Task Force was immediately engaged by enemy fire, which continued throughout the day. Agent Richard Dobrich, the team leader, climbed onto a roof to establish an observation post. While on the roof, he was shot by a 7.62 mm round that struck him directly in the front of his protective ballistic vest, knocking him backwards. Agent Dobrich then sought cover and maneuvered to another rooftop.  After reaching his new position, he was struck again with a 7.62 mm round. This shot entered his right hand, exited the hand, and then entered his right leg.

DEA Special Agent Scott Wight and a U.S. Special Forces soldier immediately came to Agent Dobrich’s aid, providing emergency medical treatment under fire. Realizing that Agent Dobrich was wounded, DEA Agents Michael Mayer and Tom Frick immediately climbed to the roof and engaged the enemy. Agent Dobrich was able to be evacuated and received emergency trauma care. The task force continued to clear and search compounds, while engaging insurgents, until nightfall and throughout the following day.

Special Agent Richard Dobrich displayed exceptional heroism, bravery, and valor during an operation involving extreme and imminent danger, including firefights with the Taliban lasting several hours on multiple days. He was courageous in his attempts to establish and secure an observation post for his team and the task force.


A group of people standing together in a row at the Badge of Bravery awards ceremony