A rookie cop on just his fourth shift was one of the first two officers to descend upon the downtown Louisville bank where an employee opened fire Monday, and the rookie was hit in a barrage of bullets moments later that left him in critical condition, body-camera footage shows.
The Louisville Metro Police Department released body-camera footage Tuesday showing how the gunman in the deadly shooting, Connor Sturgeon, was declared "down" just seven minutes after the initial dispatch call.
The footage, which was edited and blurred by the police department, shows Officer Nickolas Wilt, who graduated from the police academy on March 31, driving to the shooting scene with training Officer Cory Galloway, who has been with the department since 2018.
The two ran up the stairs of bank at 8:41 a.m. and were fired upon seconds later.
Galloway is seen tumbling to the ground and taking cover behind a planter box and returning fire. The video does not show Wilt getting shot but a blurred-out figure is seen behind Galloway as he runs for cover.
Police included a still photo in the released footage from inside the bank showing the gunman in jeans and sneakers and holding a rifle at his side.
Louisville Police Deputy Chief Paul Humphrey said the gunman had an elevated position behind glass doors that gave him a tactical advantage and meant no one could see him.
At one point Galloway is heard yelling, “He’s shooting straight through these windows, right towards the officer.”
More officers are seen arriving to the bank as sirens wail in the background.
Louisville police release bodycam footage of bank shootingApril 11, 202303:23
At 8:44 a.m. Galloway is seen opening fire toward the doors and glass is seen shattering. Seconds later he shouts: "I think I got him down! I think he's down!"
Galloway then headed toward the building, yelling at other police officers on site to "Get the officer" and made his way into the bank through the shattered glass doors where he passed a figure, blurred out, sprawled on the ground.
A timeline shared by police in the footage said that officers were initially dispatched at 8:38 a.m., arrived at the scene at 8:41 a.m., and the officers made entry into the bank confirming the shooter was down at 8:45 a.m.
In the bank shooting, five people were killed and eight others were injured, including the two officers.
Louisville gunman bought rifle one week before shootingApril 11, 202303:56
Both officers were shot by Sturgeon in the confrontation. Galloway was grazed on his left side, while Wilt was shot in the head, police said.
Wilt was hospitalized and remains in critical condition and in the ICU, UofL Health said Wednesday morning.
Officials praised Wilt and Galloway for their bravery in responding to the shooting spree.
“It’s easy to tell an officer that you have to run towards gunfire. It’s another thing for them to actually do it," Humphrey said during a news conference Tuesday.
“What you saw on that video was absolutely amazing ... They deserve to be honored for what they did because it is not something that comes easily,” he said. “Anybody who gets shot at, reacts. For people to react by staying there, staying in the fire, and going back inside the scene, keeping themselves in danger — that’s superhuman.”
Police said Sturgeon was using an AR-15 style rifle that he had purchased from an authorized seller less than a week prior to Monday’s carnage on April 4.
In a stark contrast, the police video footage showed Wilt holding a handgun before approaching the bank. It also showed Galloway retrieve a rifle-style firearm from the trunk of their police vehicle.
Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg said to NBC's Tom Llamas on NBC News Now Tuesday night, "Here we have officers that are outgunned by assailants" calling the discrepancy "infuriating."
While details on what motivated the shooting are not immediately clear, officials have said that Sturgeon, 25, was an employee at Old National Bank and he had livestreamed the attack, which was quickly removed, according to Meta, which owns Facebook and Instagram.
Sturgeon’s family said in a statement Tuesday that he had “mental health challenges” they were working to address but showed no signs of violence.
“While we have many unanswered questions, we will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement officials and do all we can to aid everyone in understanding why and how this happened,” the family said.
Investigations remain ongoing.