Body camera video from an Algood, Tenn., police officer shows what led to a huge multi-state manhunt.
The video shows Officer Ahscari Valencia pull over his patrol car to speak with the driver of a pickup truck who was parked outside a storage facility. Officer Valencia did not know the driver of the truck was Floyd Ray Cook, who had a long criminal history and was wanted on felony drug charges.
The video, from October of last year, shows Cook’s odd behavior in the moments before he raised a gun and shot officer Valencia.
The bullet hit Valencia in the chest, but he was saved by his bulletproof vest.
Cook sped away, beginning a six day manhunt across parts of Tennessee and Kentucky.
“It was terrifying,” said Algood Police Chief Gary Harris. “It was quick … He did everything by the book, and I am proud of that,” Harris said.
“Can you do me a favor?” Officer Valencia asked the driver. “Can you stick your hands out for me? There you go — just keep them out. Put them on the steering wheel for me, OK?”
There are lots of pre-attack indicators in this video: the demeanor of the driver, his gestures and motions, refusal to follow commands, keeping the truck in reverse, his location, and so forth.
Bottom line: The officer is likely alive because he was wearing his vest. The .45 slug landed right on Officer Velencia’s chest above his heart.