The Medical Director for Theda Clark Regional Medical Center said it’s miraculous a Fond du Lac Police Officer survived being shot twice in the chest during an incident Sunday morning. Dr. Ray Georgen says the tactical vest 33-year-old Officer Ryan Williams was wearing slowed down the high-velocity rounds that struck him. “His life in my mind was clearly saved,” by the vest, said Georgen. “Both of the bullets did go through it, but the amount of energy and the speed of those bullets were dissipated by going through the bullet proof armor.”
Georgen said Williams is on a ventilator and remains in critical condition, but they are encouraged by his progress. “So far he’s awake and alert and has some significant bruises to his lung from the injury,” he said. Officer Craig Birkholz wasn’t as fortunate. He died at the scene. Dr. Georgen says they had three operating rooms prepared because they were initially expecting more shooting victims. The shooter, 30-year-old James Cruckson, took his own life.
Also on Monday, a Wisconsin police chief warned that scammers may be attempting to take advantage of public sympathy for the officers.
Richard Dehnel, chief in the Dodge County Village of Brownsville, said he was outraged at a call he received Monday morning. Someone saying they were with a police association called to say they were calling to raise funds for police officers killed in the line of duty. Dehnel has no sympathy for scammers trying to capitalize on the death of Officer Birkholz. “Police associations do not call people for money – they do not,” said Dehnel. “And now that one of our officers has been shot, I’m sure the dirtbags are out there in full.” The caller was unaware they were talking to a police chief. Dehnel asked for a number he could call the man back at. He said that number was nonexistent.
Bob Nelson, KFIZ