PORTSMOUTH, Va. - Thousands of men and women in uniform put their lives on the line every day when they go to work here in Hampton Roads. Friday we continue our series dedicated to the first responders who went above and beyond the call of duty this year.
The Valor Awards are presented by the Hampton Roads Chamber. News 3 is honored to partner again this year and showcase incredible feats of bravery.
We have brought you stories about Portsmouth Police Officer Angelina Baaklini and the recent trial of the 15-year-old found guilty of shooting her.
Now, Portsmouth Police Chief Tonya Chapman speaks about the Hampton Roads Chamber honoring Officer Baaklini for exemplifying Distinguished Valor.
"Officer Angelina Baaklini, she was on patrol when she came across a juvenile had had known to be a runaway. So she tried to take him into custody and return him back to his proper location. When he drew a weapon and shot her five times," Chief Tonya Chapman said.
Baaklini's had the will to survive was still able to put out a total description of the individual so arriving officers would know who to look for while she was fighting for her own life, Chief Chapman said.
"By the time we were able to see her at the hospital, she was unconscious when we were first there. When she woke up the first thing she tried to do, and she couldn’t speak because she had tubes in her mouth, was to say his name. She’s trying to write it and we got a piece of paper and she wrote enough of his name and once we said we apprehended him, we got him, she just laid her head back into tears streaming down her face because she was that worried about catching him," she said.
Even when Baaklini was released from the hospital officers said they had a motorcade and tears streamed down Chief Chapman's eyes while she watched Baaklini walk out of the hospital.
"We know when we sign up, when we take that oath of honor, it is to serve and protect the community. We will go above that and beyond the call of duty if it means taking the ultimate sacrifice," Chapman said.
News 3 will bring you other stories of incredibly brave men and women working as first responders in Hampton Roads in the coming weeks.
The Hampton Roads Chamber Valor Awards are June 7 at the Renaissance Portsmouth-Norfolk Waterfront Hotel. For more information click here to contact the Hampton Roads Chamber.