Deputy Mark Johns | Scholarships, Awards & Contests

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2022 NRA Officer of the Year Award Winner

Deputy Mark Johns, Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office

Deputy Mark Johns

During the afternoon of August 22, 2022, deputies of the Oklahoma County Sheriff’s Office went to a residence in their jurisdiction to serve a court order.

The subject of the court order was located inside the front door of his residence by Deputy Norton. The subject then moved to the rear of the house where Deputy Sergeant Swartz and Deputy Mark Johns were positioned.

These deputies attempted to communicate with the subject through the back door when, without warning, the suspect began firing rifle rounds through the door and fatally struck Sergeant Swartz. The concealed gunman continued to move and fire as Deputy Johns pulled Sergeant Swartz to a safer area and begin rendering medical aid. Deputy Johns then relocated to a more defensible position to try to locate the suspect and inform other deputies where the suspect had moved to, at the same time providing protection to Sergeant Swartz.

During this time, the shooter moved through the house and attempted to engage Deputy Norton who was at the front of the house. The gunman then exited the house and began to fire at Deputy Johns from another direction. The two exchanged gunfire and Deputy Johns was struck and knocked down when a rifle round entering his thigh, damaging his femoral artery and launching shrapnel into his abdomen.

Deputy Johns continued to return fire as the gunman ran back into the house. The suspect suddenly exited the residence, jumped into a vehicle and sped away while firing at the deputies and their vehicles. Oklahoma County deputies and Oklahoma City officers gave pursuit. The pursuit ended after the suspect attempted to run through the security gate at Tinker Air Force Base, where he was then taken into custody.

Despite being critically wounded in the incident, Deputy Mark Johns continued to return fire to protect Sergeant Swartz, Deputy Norton, and himself. His actions and courage under fire are a credit to his department and the community he serves, and keeps with the highest standards of law enforcement. As such, it is with great honor and pride, the National Rifle Association names Deputy Mark Johns as the 2022 NRA Law Enforcement Officer of the Year.

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