The thin blue line: Looking back on the last MPD Officer shooting

(Source: MGN Online)
(Source: MGN Online)

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - There is no routine day or call for a police officer. All officers and their families know that putting on the badge every day means putting your life on the line to protect the public, and some officers have given the ultimate sacrifice.

It's been several years since an MPD officer was shot in the line of duty. Montgomery's Public Safety Director Chris Murphy says the last time this happened was September 2006. Officer Keith Houts was making a traffic stop on North Decatur Street at 12:45 PM, when the driver of the car opened fire, shooting Officer Houts in the head and chest. He was in critical condition for two days and later passed away.

"It's a risk you take every time you come to work," said Director Murphy.

Murphy says officers are trained straight out of the academy to deal with these situations.

"The training is very good, and we also have in-service hours every year where we train for these types of scenarios. We always remind our officers to be alert. This happened on a Sunday morning, not on a Friday or Saturday night when you're maybe more on alert anyways," added Murphy. "We get shoplifting calls at major department stores on a daily basis. You just never know what you're doing to encounter."

There are over 500 sworn officers in the Montgomery Police Department. MPD leaders say they work    hard to make sure all of them make it home to their families every night.