Christopher Shine, North Liberty Iowa Police Department
During the early evening of March 10, 2013, North Liberty Iowa Police Department officers were dispatched to a 911 call reporting a domestic fight between a man and his girlfriend at their residence. The caller heard yelling and the male had been jumping on the woman's car and screaming at her. This was not the first time officers had responded to this address.
The residence was a mobile home with a small elevated enclosed deck attached to the front door with a ramp leading to the front door. Officers located a woman outside who showed signs of being assaulted, was crying, and clearly under emotional duress. This woman was in the process of moving out of the trailer when attacked by her boyfriend. When she was asked about weapons in the trailer she said she thought her boyfriend had removed his pistol from the trailer earlier in the day and he was alone inside the trailer.
Officers moved up the ramp to knock on the door only to find themselves confined in a very small area with little room to maneuver and impossible for all of them to be away from the front of the door. The officers made contact with the boyfriend but he refused to open the door or come outside. Negotiations with the boyfriend to open the door were going nowhere so he was warned that officers would force entry. At this point, the boyfriend could be partially seen through a narrow window slot by the side of the door. Seeing no immediate threat from the boyfriend it was decided to attempt to force the door open by kicking it in. As soon as entry was attempted the suspect ran toward the back of the trailer and within seconds gunfire erupted and bullets began bursting through the front door, and two of the three officers, including Officer Christopher Shine had been shot. Officer Shine was hit in the abdomen and the second officer in the chest. While the rounds caused serious injuries, they did not penetrate the body armor of either officer.
Two of the officers made it down the ramp to take covering positions, with one finding a side window to try to engage the gunman from. Officer Shine remained on the deck and while he could not see the gunman, he knew he was still in line with the now open trailer door as rounds were still being fired towards the front door. Hoping the gunman would reveal himself, Officer Shine used what little concealment he had to his advantage to be ready to engage the attempted killer. There was a pause in the gunfire and the gunman moved into view. Seeing each other almost at the same time the two exchanged fire, Officer Shine prevailed, striking the gunman seven times and the gunman's rampage was over. Amazingly, the time it took from the gunman's first shot and his attempt to kill the officers until Officer Shine's last shot to end the incident was only 19 seconds.
Understanding that the danger was not necessarily over, Officer Shine moved off the deck to seek cover and only then realized he had been shot in the side and his hand injured and bleeding, apparently from shrapnel.
Officer Shine's heroic actions under the most stressful and confusing circumstances while seriously injured is a credit to himself, his department, and the community he serves and are in keeping with the highest traditions of law enforcement. Had the gunman been able to continue his attack and exit the trailer there is no doubt the lives of the gunman's girlfriend and Officer Shine's fellow officers would have been in jeopardy.
It is with great honor and pride that the National Rifle Association recognizes Officer Christopher Shine of the North Liberty Iowa Police Department for his valorous actions by naming him the 2013 NRA Law Enforcement Officer of the Year.