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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The Miami-Dade Police Department has released dramatic surveillance video of a police-involved shooting at a Northwest Miami-Dade gas station in 2013 on the same day the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office officially closed the case.
The officer involved in the incident, Mario Gutierrez, saw the video for the first time on Monday.
“What I noticed right away was that 80 percent of that video, I don’t remember. I was doing things there that to this day I have no recollection of,” said Gutierrez.
The incident took place in October 2013. Officer Gutierrez, while on routine patrol, stopped at a Shell Gas station on Lejeune Road and NW 25th Street. While there, he spotted Dominique Jean tampering with the lid that accesses the station’s underground gasoline storage tanks. As he approached the suspect, Officer Gutierrez realized the guy had started a fire near the lid and was attempting to ignite the two 8,000-gallon tanks.
Gutierrez quickly activated the emergency shut-off valve to the fuel pumps. He then approached Jean to try and prevent him from continuing with the fire.
There was a confrontation which escalated into a violent struggle. Jean, police said, attacked Gutierrez with a large knife.
Gutierrez was badly wounded and suffered severe stab wounds to his arms, hands, chest, stomach and leg. Despite his injuries, the officer continued to fight and ended up shooting and killing Jean.
Gutierrez said his family is what kept him fighting for his life.
“The determination to see my family, that was the most important thing. I did not want to die and never see them again,” said Gutierrez.
It’s believed Gutierrez’ swift actions may have prevented a deadly explosion at the gas station.
But the fight wasn’t over for him, after a number of surgeries Gutierrez would still find himself suffering physically and emotionally.
“After the incident, for several months, I would have nightmares. I would wake up fighting,” said Gutierrez.
Officer Gutierrez was awarded with a Congressional Badge of Bravery. The Badge was established by Congress to honor exceptional acts of bravery in the line of duty by federal, state and local law enforcement officers. He is the first Miami-Dade Officer to ever receive the honor.
He was also named the Miami-Dade Police Benevolent association Officer of the Year in 2013 and received an MIA Hero Award plaque by the Miami-Dade Aviation Department.
While he has received a myriad of commendations, he says those were proud – but not his proudest – moments. He said the proudest day of his life was the day he was hired to be a Miami-Dade police officer.
Now, back at work, he said, “I’m going to finish my career and spend my retirement with my family, and enjoy that, and peace, to be in peace until the day I leave this earth.”