Denver Health paramedic awarded commendation for saving officer under attack by murder suspect

Posted at 1:33 PM, Sep 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-09-05 15:33:11-04

DENVER — An officer under attack by a now-accused murderer said he owes thanks to a Denver Health paramedic who stepped in to help.

Denver Police and the Daniels Fund stood together on Tuesday morning as they thanked Lieutenant Otis McKay Jr., who stopped a murder suspect from beating the police officer as he responded to an assault call. That assault scene proved to be the scene of a homicide.

When the officer responded on June 16, police say he found a suspect beating an unresponsive victim. Not long after, the responding officer was under attack. 

Police reports say the murder suspect, now identified as DeJuan Stamps, charged the officer after the officer drew his weapon and ordered him to stop. 

"Lieutenant Otis McKay demonstrated tremendous courage and suffered injuries while helping police officers detain a dangerous suspect — an act clearly deserving community recognition," Linda Childears, president and CEO of the Daniels Fund, said. 

McKay stepped in while Stamps allegedly beat the officer and was working to take the officer's gun. McKay reportedly was able to help restrain the man until police could get him in handcuffs.

"Lieutenant McKay stepped in without regard for his own welfare," Denver Police Chief Robert White said. "I can't thank Lieutenant McKay enough for helping to protect our officer and our community, and I greatly appreciate the day-to-day support Denver's public safety agencies provide each other." 

The Daniels Fund donated $1,000 to the Denver Health Foundation for use in paramedic scholarships in Lieutenant McKay's honor, and the Denver Police Department confirmed they will present McKay with an official commendation.

Police say the most seriously injured victim of Stamps' assault, identified as James Farmer Jr., died from blunt force injuries sustained during the assault. 

Stamps remains in police custody and continues to face first-degree murder charges. Read more here.