Officers honored for valor

Seven police officers who were the first to respond to a May 2007 domestic disturbance call were honored Wednesday evening with medal of valor awards by the Henderson Police Department.

The officers were among more than 100 who took home awards at the Police Department’s commendation ceremony.

In the May 30 incident at the home near Boulder Highway and College Drive, the officers arrived to find a woman and her 11-year-old son outside the house. The woman told police shots had been fired inside the home.

Officers tried to get into a second-story bedroom, where a married couple was locked inside. When the man and his estranged wife wouldn’t come out, police tried to kick in the door and shots were fired at the officers through the door.

Officer Joe Yzaguirre was hit in the foot by the gunfire. Other officers returned fire and escorted Yzaguirre out of the home.

The Clark County coroner later determined that a 21-year-old man first shot his wife, also 21, then turned the gun on himself.

Yzaguirre was honored with a purple heart after being wounded during the incident. Officer John Bellow received a medal of honor for putting himself in the line of fire and pulling Yzaguirre to safety.

Other notable honors Wednesday included three life-saving awards.

Officer Patrick Reimann received one. On March 1, 2007, Reimann responded to a call outside of his patrol area to aid a man having a heart attack. Reimann used an automated emergency defibrillator on the 68-year-old man, who was resuscitated and stabilized by emergency medical personnel.

In another incident, officers Cynthia Hubert and Peter Sanchez saved the life of a man who attempted to hang himself in the shower of the Henderson Detention Center on Oct. 2, 2007. They also were given life-saving awards.

The third life-saving award went to officers Kevin Scott and Mark Amundson. On Feb. 2, Scott was patrolling near Warm Springs Road and Stephanie Street when a vehicle rolled into the center median and stopped.

Scott called for assistance and was met by Amundson, who broke through the window of the locked vehicle.

Inside the car the officers found a woman who had suffered a heart attack, was not breathing and had no pulse. They removed her from the car and began cardiopulmonary resuscitation until emergency personnel arrived.

Contact reporter Antonio Planas at or 702-383-4638.

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