JOPLIN, Mo. — Captain Will Davis was the one who fired the shots ending the standoff a year ago.
“This last year has gone by very, really fast,” said JPD Capt. Will Davis.
A lot has happened following the events of March 8th, 2022.
“My initial thought was, this is going to be an armed and barricaded situation. This is going to be prolonged over several hours. In a split second things turn and within 30 seconds, it’s over,” said Davis.
He fired the shots – ending the pursuit and standoff.
Not something he ever expected to do.
“I’m in an office job that is likely that this is going to happen is low. And then, you know, everything changed. So it’s definitely changed my outlook on the way things are handled and you know, the possibilities of things that could happen,” said Davis.
Davis remembers ending up at the hospital talking to Roxy Cooper – wife of Corp. Ben Cooper.
“I remember holding on to Willy because he sent that demon back to hell,” said Roxy Cooper, Cooper’s Wife.
“That’s pretty much every time this year. That’s what she says,” said Davis.
But, Will Davis doesn’t consider himself a hero.
“It’s part of the job and I know if other people have been in the same situation, I mean, it would have done the same thing,” added Davis.
That said, the community support was immediate and overwhelming.
“My phone was nonstop for weeks and his calls, text messages. I mean, people sent a message on social media, as people you know, as people you don’t know. I mean, it was crazy,” said Davis.
Davis says the incident highlighted the need for a greater focus on officer wellness.
“A lot of guys, police officers to be the first to tell you that you know, we’re hard-headed and we’re not going to be open to sharing a lot of feelings and dealing with all the things and the trauma, the job but this last year is kind of realized that we need to try to buck that trend and change that mindset,” said Davis.
His training was crucial on the scene, something he wants to incorporate in regular training sessions.
“Things you know, like shooting from a from the vehicle, practicing different things that, you know, in the past, we thought we may not really encounter or need to train on as much,” said Davis.
And now, a year later, Will Davis has an even greater appreciation for the men and women he works with – and the community he serves.
“Other places aren’t as fortunate. They don’t have that. And it’s sad, but you know, it makes us you know, feel blessed to have the community that we have here,” said Davis.