Three Lexington County deputies shot in the line of duty have been awarded the South Carolina Sheriffs’ Association’s Medal of Valor.
Deputy Gabriel Mulkey and Kevin O’Dell, who retired as a school resource officer last year, were shot during a domestic incident at a Columbia apartment complex last August.
Deputy Mike Medlin was shot during a domestic dispute that prompted an hours-long standoff in a Lexington subdivision last September.
“All three of these men acted bravely and selflessly as they faced the unthinkable last year,” Lexington County Sheriff Jay Koon said. “To have three deputies shot in less than a month was tough for our department, but our community rallied around each of them with thanks and appreciation for their service.”
Mulkey and O’Dell were shot after a subject emerged from an apartment using his child as a shield, Koon said. Mulkey suffered a gunshot wound to his arm. O’Dell was shot in the chest and leg.
Koon said Medlin took fire from a man barricaded in his home. The subject stepped out of his front door and shot Medlin in the head. Medlin returned fire, forcing the man back inside.
“I’m proud of these men for receiving this important award,” Koon said. “Because of their actions and response, two very tense situations didn’t end tragically.”
Mulkey, O’Dell and Medlin were recognized Tuesday at the South Carolina Sheriffs’ Association’s spring conference and banquet in Columbia.