Cop shot in Las Vegas Strip shooting was on his second day

Updated October 10, 2017 - 11:16 am

The stolen police vehicle screeched to a stop. Its lights were blinding and its sirens deafening.

They pulled the injured officer out of the front passenger seat and threw him onto a stretcher.

“This is what I signed up for,” thought the officer, Brady Cook. “I would do it all again in a heartbeat.”

It was only his second day on the job.

family photo

Everyone around him was in a panic, but Cook was focused on the buzzing in his ears and his limp right arm. He couldn’t move his fingers.

They pushed him through the double doors of University Medical Center’s emergency room, shoving past doctors and nurses readying themselves for the flood of victims the only Level 1 trauma center in Southern Nevada would soon see.

‘We’ve got shots fired’

Less than 24 hours prior, the Metropolitan Police Department officer had been patrolling the Route 91 Harvest country music festival during his first shift since graduating from the police academy nine days earlier. He was lucky enough, he thought, to be assigned to the same area command as his father, Metro officer Matt Cook.

family photo

“I never imagined the second night would end this way,” he told the Las Vegas Review-Journal on Sunday. “It all just happened so fast.”

The young officer, shirtless with his wounds exposed, squirmed in his chair as he spoke about the attack a week earlier. He was soaking up some sun in the backyard of his childhood home, where he was staying with his family until he regained full mobility. Struggling to lift his right arm as he examined his wounds, Cook shut his eyes, thinking back to Oct. 1.

Just after 10 p.m. on the last night of the music festival, the 22-year-old officer and his field training officer, Josh Haynes, were stepping out of their vehicle to patrol the Strip near the Flamingo. Their night was just starting.

But then the call came in.

“We’ve got shots fired,” a panicked officer’s voice emerged from the radio. “It sounded like an automatic firearm.”

The next 15 minutes were a blur for Cook.

It was about 10:08 p.m. when the newly minted police officer caught a bullet below his right shoulder. No one knew it yet, but the gunfire was raining down from Stephen Paddock’s 32nd-floor Mandalay Bay suite.

Cook and his training officer were among the first to arrive on the scene of what eventually would be named the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. They joined three other patrol units stationed just outside the festival grounds, near Las Vegas Boulevard South and Mandalay Bay Road.

Cook, Haynes and a handful of other responding officers took cover behind their vehicles on the south end of the Strip. It was during the second or third volley of gunfire, Cook recalled, that they were trying to pinpoint where the shooter was and form a strike team.

Instead, the lights from their patrol cars attracted the brunt of Paddock’s gunfire. Cook thinks, at least for a minute or so, that they were able to pull the gunfire away from the crowd of more than 22,000 concertgoers.

“That gave people an opportunity to get out,” he said.

One bullet, four wounds

Cook doesn’t know when he was shot.

“The gunfire,” he explained, “it felt like it was coming from everywhere. It was coming from above, left, right, even from the bottom up.”

At one point, Cook said, he just knew. He looked down where his right arm was supposed to be and only saw blood on his sleeve.

That’s when Cook and Haynes bolted down Las Vegas Boulevard. A parked car near the Luxor served as temporary protection for the two officers as Haynes ripped his trainee’s shirt and bulletproof vest off.

“He was thinking to do a tourniquet on me if I was hit in the arm, but he saw I had a chest wound,” Cook said.

The bullet had blown through his bicep and into the right side of his chest. It traveled down, grazing his rib cage, before ripping through his skin again.

“He knew he had to get me to the hospital,” Cook said of his field training officer.

But it was an active scene, and Paddock was still firing down. The two kept running.

Every time Cook looked down at his feet, he said, he could only see smoke poofing up from the street.

“As we’re running, all we see is bullets chasing us,” he said, “just bouncing off the ground.”

They didn’t stop running until they found two more officers taking cover behind an abandoned patrol vehicle. The car didn’t belong to them, but the keys were in the ignition.

“We ended up stealing this patrol car and we get in,” Cook said.

Minutes later, the stolen police vehicle screeched to a stop near the emergency room entrance.

“This could happen on day one, or it can happen in your 30th year,” Cook said, pulling on the fabric of his shorts. “It just happened for me on day two. You’re there to do a job, so when stuff hits the fan, you go and you do your job.”

Contact Rio Lacanlale at or 702-383-0381. Follow @riolacanlale on Twitter.

Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Clark County recount votes in commission’s District E primary
Clark County staff begin the recount requested by candidate Marco Hernandez in the democratic primary for the County Commission's District E seat on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Long-running local hip hop producer wants Vegas rappers to shine
Las Vegas Hip Hop producer and co-owner of Digital Insight Recording Studios Tiger Stylz reflects on 30 years of music production in the city. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Construction for new 51s ballpark underway
New home of the Las Vegas 51s is planned to be finished by March 2019 in Summerlin according to team president Don Logan. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Underground home was built as Cold War-era hideaway
The underground house at 3970 Spencer Street is one of the valley’s most unusual homes built 26 feet underground in 1978 by Girard “Jerry” B. Henderson, who, planned to survive the end of the world there.
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours takes you where the locals go
Donald Contursi talks about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, which offers walking tours of restaurants on and off Las Vegas Boulevard with food samples and tidbits of history about the places they visit.
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
Las Vegas judge’s ruling will halt tonight’s execution
On Wednesday Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez issued a ruling that will halt the execution of convicted murderer Scott Dozier. Alvogen Inc., which makes the sedative midazolam, filed a lawsuit Tuesday accusing the Nevada Department of Corrections of surreptitiously obtaining the drug for use in an execution.
3 people shot in southeast Las Vegas
Three men were shot Thursday night in southeast Las Vegas, and two of them have life threatening injuries. Las Vegas police responded to the incident just after 10 p.m. on the 5000 block of Mountain Vista Street. The investigation is in its early stages and police were unable to describe the suspect or say how man people they think were involved. Police encourage anyone with information regarding this shooting to call Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555, or 3-1-1
Robbery suspects apprehended
Four robbery suspects were taken into custody Thursday morning after a vehicle and foot chase that ended in an east Las Vegas neighborhood. The incident began when a person was robbed at gunpoint around 4:45 a.m. near Maryland Parkway and Desert Inn. Officers arriving at the scene tried to stop two vehicles. One vehicle escaped but police chased the second into a neighborhood on Flamingo Road near Mountain Vista Street. Police surrounded the neighborhood and the suspects were apprehended. It looked like one police vehicle was involved in a collision with the suspects' car. One woman suffered an unknown injury and was taken to the hospital in an ambulance. 01:04
Las Vegas police looking for robbery suspects
Two robbers who recently targeted three Las Vegas businesses remained at large Tuesday and police are asking the public to help identify them. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser gives update of officer-involved shooting
Metro Capt. Jaime Prosser provides an update about an officer-involved shooting at Radwick Drive and Owens Avenue in the northeast Las Vegas on Thursday. A robbery suspect was shot and killed. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
LVMPD Looking For Robbery Suspect
The LVMPD Commercial Robbery Section is attempting to identify the pictured suspect who is responsible for committing robberies to businesses in the southern part of the Las Vegas Valley during the month of May 2018. The suspect enters the business, threatens the employee with a firearm and demands money from the register. The employee complies and the suspect flees the business.
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead
North Las Vegas police are investigating a triple shooting that left one man dead at 2500 block of Ellis St., on Friday, June 8, 2018. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
1 dead in shooting at southwest Las Vegas home
A dispute between roommates led to the fatal shooting of one man in the backyard of their southwest Las Vegas Valley home on Monday, April 23, 2018. (Rio Lacanlale/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Henderson Police Seek Armed Bank Robbery Suspect
This afternoon a male suspect entered the Bank of America, located at 2638 W. Horizon Ridge Parkway, at about 12:40 p.m. As he entered the bank, he pulled a black mask down to conceal his face.The suspect is described as a late-forties to early-fifties white male adult, approximately 5 foot 8 inches to 5 foot 10 inches tall and weighing approximately 160 to 180 pounds He was last seen wearing a dark colored beanie, a grayish blue plaid shirt, dark jeans and dark colored shoes. His head was shaved on the sides and the top of his hair was dark in color. Vehicle was described as possibly a gray 2012-2014 four door Ford Focus. The license plates were covered with black tape. The suspect is considered armed and dangerous. Do not attempt to contact the suspect but call police immediately. Anyone with information is urged to call the Henderson Police Department at 702-267-4911, to remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers at 702-385-5555.
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
You May Like

You May Like