Female Police Officer Kim Munley Credited with Stopping Ft. Hood Massacre, Hailed a Hero

Submitted by Quest-News-Serv... on Sun, 11/08/2009 - 07:26.
 

 
Female Police Officer Credited with Stopping Ft. Hood Massacre, Hailed a Hero

Fox News

November 6, 2009
By Sarah Netter
ABC News

In the midst of the murderous gunfire that sent soldiers at Fort Hood scattering, it was a civilian mother of two who ran towards the gunfire, taking down the shooter in a close range gunbattle that left both wounded.

Photo: Officer Kim Munley, pictured here with country singer Dierks Bentley at a July 4 Fort Hood festival, in a photo from Munley's Twitter account.

Sgt. Kimberly Munley, who lives in Killeen, Texas, has been hailed a hero by Fort Hood base commander Lt. Gen. Robert Cone, who credited her today with bringing the massacre to an end and saving an untold number of lives.

"She was quite effective, one of our most impressive young policemen," Cone told "Good Morning America" today. "She walked up and basically engaged him. I think, certainly, this could've been far worse."

Munley's brother Daniel Barbour told ABC News at the Metroplex Hospital today that his sister had been shot three times in the hand and the leg. She will again undergo surgery today as one of the bullets pierced an artery.

Her husband, Matthew Munley, Barbour said, is rushing from Pennsylvania to be by his wife's side.

Cone said Munley, 34, was doing traffic control in the area when Major Nidal Malik Hasan began spraying unarmed soldiers with rounds from two pistols.

The civilian cop headed straight for the sound of gunfire.

"She had been trained in active response," Cone said. "They had rehearsed scenarios like this. Often times, the idea is you would encircle the building and wait until you have more backup. What the belief is, if you act aggressively, to take the shooter out, you'll have less fatalities."

Munley acted aggressively. Not waiting for backup, she went in after the gunman and quickly found him. As Cone put it, Munley decided "to seek him out, to confront him."

"What she did, [she] happened to catch him as he walked around the corner. They had a gunfire exchange where she shot the assailant four times... She was shot herself," Cone said.

Initial reports were that Hasan and Munley had both been killed in the shootout, but Army officials later clarified that Hasan and Munley were wounded, but survived.

ABC News' Bob Woodruff reported today that Hasan is paralyzed from his injuries.

Army spokesman Lt. Col. Nathan Banks, on his way to Fort Hood today, told ABCNews.com that Munley, like all Army civilian police officers, had been trained in weapons tactics just like military police.

"She went right into action," Banks said. "This is the way that she was trained exactly."

"She went into harm's way and she saved a lot of people," he added.

Munley likely used her military-issue 9mm on Hasan, Banks said, which is what most civilian officers carry, though he could not confirm that was the weapon involved. Some officers, he said, are issued Colt .45s.

Sgt. Kimberly Munley Hailed as Hero

Taken into surgery afterwards, Munley spent Thursday night calling her fellow co-workers from her hospital bed to make sure everyone was okay.

With the majority of the Army's military police attachments deployed to Iraq or Afghanistan, civilian police officers have been hired in large numbers to provide security for the bases stateside. They are contracted, Banks said, from private companies.

"Their role is just the same as the military police officers. They do everything that they do," he said. "Hey are great. They do an excellent, excellent job."

In the hours after the shootings, two Facebook groups sprung up dedicated to Munley and her heroic actions.

"At that tragic moment you were able to use your training and abilities to bring an end to a day that will haunt the lives of many for years to come," one member posted in the group "God Bless SGT Kimberly Munley." "Thank you for being a true hero."

And in the group "Sgt. Kimberly Munley: A Real American Hero!" one woman stationed in Japan with her military husband said that Munley had inspired her to learn how to shoot once she returned to the U.S.

Munley's two daughters, the eldest from a previous marriage, are 15 and 2.

ABC News' Nikki Battiste contributed to this report.

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