Father speaks out: Bystander helped save wounded Riverside cop

February 15, 2013 12:00:00 AM PST
The father of the Riverside police officer shot and wounded during the Chris Dorner search is speaking out. He says a Good Samaritan came to the officer's aid and may have saved his life.

Anthony Tachias described the early morning call when he first learned his son, Riverside Police Officer Andrew Tachias, had been shot.

"I was told to turn on the TV, Andrew had been shot, and I turned the television on, and I was stunned," said Anthony Tachias.

Anthony Tachias, a lieutenant with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, says he jumped into his car and headed for Riverside when he got the news about his son.

"The drive from home to the hospital has got to be the scariest ride I've ever had," he said.

Last week, his 27-year-old son and his training officer, Michael Crain, were ambushed while stopped at a red light. Authorities say Dorner was behind the attack, firing multiple rounds into their patrol car.

"He was able to share just how frightened he was and just how sudden and unexpected this attack was upon he and his partner, Officer Crain," Anthony Tachias said.

Crain was killed, and Andrew Tachias was severely wounded in both arms. A cab driver who witnessed the shooting rushed over, helping to operate the patrol radio and call for help. The man was identified as Karam Kaoud.

"I pressed the button, and he called for help," Kaoud said. "His expression all focusing on his partner."

Kaoud says he would have done it for anyone. But Anthony Tachias says what the Kaoud did makes him a hero.

"Had it not been for him to take it upon himself, that level of bravery after what just occurred, Andy probably would have bled out and would have died," he said.

But Kaoud credited Andrew Tachias calm during the critical time.

"Someone needs help, and you are (the) only one over there. You would not run away and leave them," Kaoud said.

Anthony Tachias says his son had just been partnered with Crain three weeks prior to the shooting. Despite their short time together, he says Crain had made a big impression.

"It was a man that he had come to love and respect," he said.

Anthony Tachias said Crain's death has left his son devastated. Just five months earlier, his son had been involved in another incident while he was still a patrol officer with the Inglewood Police Department. In that incident, he and his partner were shot at, wounding his partner.

A memorial fund has been established for the family of Crain and Detective Jeremiah MacKay, who was killed in a shootout with Dorner on Tuesday. For more information, visit http://www.iees.ie/.


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