Trooper recognized for helping fellow officers after being shot


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A Michigan State Police trooper has received international honors for his actions during a Comstock Township home invasion where he was shot.

Trooper Mark Fletcher has been named the 2020 International Association of Chiefs of Police and Motorola Solutions Trooper of the Year, MSP said in a Thursday release.

Fletcher, who joined MSP in 2017, was one of the officers shot during a deadly home invasion on Dec. 1, 2019.

During the invasion, the intruder had taken homeowner Christopher Ryan Lee Neal hostage, while the man’s wife and child had run to the upstairs room.

Fletcher and the other officers heard a gunshot and ran inside. They saved the woman and child and tried to negotiate with the gunman.

The gunman continue to fire, shooting three officers including Fletcher, who was shot below his knee.

Fletcher gave first aid to one of the other officers before tending to his own injury. On the way to the hospital, he continued giving first aid to one of the other injured officers.

The gunman shot and killed Neal and tried to escape but was soon arrested.

“Trooper Fletcher’s bravery while under fire and his concern for others over himself is admirable and in keeping with the highest standards of our profession,” Col. Joe Gasper, director of MSP said in a release. “His selfless and courageous actions are what we hope to instill in our troopers when they find themselves in such harrowing circumstances.” 

The suspect, identified as William Paul Jones, has a hearing on Aug. 30. He faces 19 counts: open murder; felony murder; three counts of assault with intent to commit murder; first-degree home invasion; unlawful imprisonment; being a felon in possession of a firearm; being a felon in possession of ammunition; assaulting, resisting and obstructing an officer; and nine counts of felony firearm.

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