RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The two Richmond police officers who were shot while responding to a call last June are sharing their stories of recovery and perseverance. Jason Scott and Rashad Martin were each shot twice. One of them barely survived.
According to police last year, 30-year-old Rashad Martin and 28-year-old Jason Scott responded to a report of a person with a gun on Semmes Avenue in the Manchester neighborhood of Richmond. Soon after they arrived, according to authorities, a suspect started shooting. Gunfire was returned. The suspect and the two officers were shot and all three of them were taken to a hospital.
The first responders are opening up about the early morning incident one year later, taking us back to the day that changed their careers and lives forever.
Not a day goes by when they don’t think about the morning of June 2, 2020. “I recall just one moment, and then pure chaos,” said Officer Martin in an interview Friday. “It could have ended up way worse. We’re both lucky.”
Because of current court proceedings and the ongoing investigation, the officers couldn’t comment much on what lead up to the shooting that morning. However, they said many details are fuzzy anyway because it all happened so quick.
Scott said when gunfire erupted, “he [Martin] was laying there for a second… and next thing I know, I’m also laying.”
Both had been shot twice. Officer Martin had bullets in his left knee and arm. He said one gunshot essentially broke his femur. Officer Scott had been shot in his chest and stomach. Both of them were rushed to a hospital. Scott was in critical condition, in and out of three surgeries immediately after the shooting, and another surgery later on.
Martin was in the hospital for about a week. Scott was released in early July after living at the hospital for a month. When Scott was released, dozens of his fellow RPD officers were lined up outside, clapping and cheering for their teammate.
Martin and Scott said their loved ones — and total strangers — gave them hope. “During that summer when it really seemed like everyone just hated law enforcement at the time, due to the things that were going on in the country, after the shooting, to receive letters, messages, GoFundme, from people that didn’t know who we were,” Martin said, “it made the experience not as bad as it could of been.”
The love was so evident. Both officers said they received dozens of cards and well wishes from children, families, law enforcement from their own community and from other jurisdictions. Tens of thousands of dollars were also raised for each of them.
“It wasn’t just the Richmond community, it was literally country wide,” Scott said.
Martin is now in physical therapy. Officer Scott is still waiting until it’s safe to do the same. He expects to be cleared for physical therapy in the next few weeks. “I’m just trying to push forward physically and mentally. Do better each day to get to the next step to be able to work at full capacity again,” Scott said.
“Despite everything that happened to both of us, we’re still willing to go out here and do what we signed up to do,” Martin said, “Which is basically to protect the community.”
Both of them still have long recoveries ahead. Officer Martin has another surgery coming up. They said they’re eager to get back to work in some capacity when their bodies and minds are ready.
The suspect, now 20-year-old Waseem Hacket, is still in and out of court with several related charges. He was shot during the shootout and sustained a non-life threatening injury, according to police.
This is a developing story. Stay with 8News for updates.