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Lieutenant Brian Murphy and Officer Savan Lenda (Oak Creek Police Department, Wisconsin)

Public Safety Officer Medal of Valor

Lieutenant Murphy and Officer Lenda receive the award for their valiant and selfless actions during a shooting at the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin on August 15, 2012. Responding to numerous calls about a disturbance at the Temple, Lieutenant Murphy saw two injured victims and the suspect running out of the building. When he drew his weapon, the suspect fired at him, hitting him in the throat, hand, and legs.

When Officer Lenda arrived, he began firing at the suspect, striking and partially disabling the man, who then crawled out of sight. Shortly thereafter, they heard a single shot as the suspect took his own life. Unaware of whether there were additional suspects, Officer Lenda drove to the location of the shot and determined that the suspect was dead. He sent the other officers to Lieutenant Murphy, who, though wounded, waved them off and directed them to help those in the Temple.

It was later learned that the suspect had fired at least six rounds in the pantry area where many women and children were hiding. He then fled the building when Lieutenant Murphy arrived. The time of the first call until the moment Officer Lenda incapacitated the suspect was about six minutes.

The selfless actions of both Lieutenant Murphy and Officer Lenda prevented further injury and helped save many lives.

Date Published: September 8, 2020