(NEW YORK) — Hundreds of New York Police Department officers and hospital staff members stood shoulder to shoulder as 30-year-old officer Hart Nguyen left Jamaica Hospital Medical Center on Friday.
Nguyen was shot while responding to a call from a mother who said her emotionally disturbed son was acting erratically in their Brooklyn home on Thursday, police said. That man, later identified as 29-year-old Andy Sookdeo, barricaded himself in a room, leading to a standoff, according to police.
Sookdeo’s mother originally told 911 dispatchers her son was not violent or armed, police said.
When officers approached the bedroom where Sookdeo was reportedly barricaded, Sookdeo opened fire, hitting Nguyen, police said.
Nguyen was shot three times — twice in the chest and once in his forearm. Fortunately, Nguyen was wearing a bulletproof vest, which is credited with saving his life.
“This young man was definitely saved by his vest, it made all of the difference here,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a news conference after the shooting.
Nguyen has only been on the force for two years, but his family in blue showed up in droves to celebrate his release from the hospital.
Nguyen grinned from ear to ear, waving to his fellow officers and giving them a thumbs-up as they thunderously applauded.
Officers knelt and took photos as Nguyen climbed into a vehicle to be escorted home.
Sookdeo was later found dead inside the bedroom of the apartment from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said. There were two guns near Sookdeo’s body, according to police.
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