‘We’ve been blown away’: Outpour of community support for RPD officers shot in the line of duty

Updated: Jun. 11, 2020 at 2:06 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - Two Richmond police officers are on the road to recovery after they were shot in the line of duty on June 2; one of them suffering critical injuries.

Officers Rashad Martin and Jason Scott, 27, responded to the 800 block of Semmes Avenue around 1:25 a.m. June 2 to investigate an armed party, according to police.

“When officers arrived, they encountered three adult males in the 1000 block of Semmes Avenue,” police said. “During their interaction, one of the males produced a firearm and exchanged gunfire with one of the officers.”

Scott, Martin, and the suspect were struck by bullets. All were taken to the hospital, Scott with life threatening injuries.

“It’s definitely been a surreal experience,” said Scott’s fiancé, Jordan Hensel. “For the first couple of days I couldn’t even wrap my head around what had happened; I couldn’t believe it.”

Hensel said her fiancé was shot once in the chest and in the abdomen near his hip. He underwent multiple surgeries when he was brought to the hospital and was taken off a ventilator on June 5 to breathe on his own.

“He’s getting a little bit better every single day,” Hensel said. “It’s been slow, and right now in order for him to get out of the ICU his body has to heal a little bit more, and start doing what it’s supposed to be doing internally; they’re just not seeing that yet.”

According to Hensel, Scott has a goal to be out of the ICU by Father’s Day; not only to celebrate his own father, but because he is a father himself to a three-year-old named Hallie.

Jason Scott and this three-year-old daughter, Hallie, pose for a photo
Jason Scott and this three-year-old daughter, Hallie, pose for a photo(Taylor Rossi)

“I explained to her that daddy got a big boo boo,” said Taylor Rossi, Hallie’s mother. “I said that the doctors are going to take care of daddy’s boo boos and make him all better. She has been walking around the house saying, ‘daddy’s going to be fine.’ Just trying to keep her positive.”

Positivity is what both Hensel and Rossi have been focused on. The two of them have unexpectedly come together over the last week to support each other during this difficult time.

“Trauma brings people together,” Hensel said.

“It really does,” Rossi added. “It’s been really nice that I can talk to her about what’s going on; how I’m feeling, how she’s feeling, how Hallie’s feeling.”

Meanwhile the community has also jumped on board to help the family as Scott recovers.

A GoFundMe has already raised more than $63,000 to support his family as he recovers.

“We’ve been blown away by it,” Hensel said. “So blessed and thankful for everyone coming together when everything else seems to be falling apart.”

“You never know how big your friends and family support is until something like this happens,” Rossi said. “To see everyone show up or check in daily or even to donate has just been amazing.”

Scott joined RPD in January 2019, according to Hensel. Scott was also feature in NBC12’s Virginia Strong back in April after a family member sent in a nomination reading, “He was a skilled hockey player, along with his team, won a Junior Olympic Gold Medal in hockey when 10 yrs old. He had traveled across the USA & parts of Canada receiving many medals & awards. At the age of 13 all he wanted to be was a Police Officer.”

Jason Scott was nominated for NBC12's Virginia Strong in April by a family member
Jason Scott was nominated for NBC12's Virginia Strong in April by a family member(NBC12)

As for Officer Rashad Martin, a GoFundMe has raised more than $25,000 for his recovery.

“Thank you to all the family, friends, and community members both near and far that have supported Rashad’s recovery,” the GoFundMe organizer wrote. “We are extremely grateful for the generosity, thoughts, and prayers. Each day he gets a bit stronger, and we’re hopeful and excited for his recovery.”

Hensel said she believed Martin was released from the hospital last week and now has several months of rehabilitation ahead of him.

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