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BROWARD (CBSMiami) – Less than two miles from where his father – Broward Sheriff’s Sgt. Chris Reyka – was murdered in 2007, Deputy Sean Reyka had his own life or death experience on the job. And on Tuesday, he’ll receive an award from the Broward Sheriff’s Office for his courage and effort.

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One early morning last October on a street in Pompano Beach, Deputy Sean Reyka pulled over a car with a taillight, headlight and brake light out. Reyka figured the driver might have had an electrical problem and thought he’d give the guy a warning.

But when Reyka walked up to the car that plan changed.

“He suddenly accelerates backward and I jump out of the way and it hits my elbow,” Reyka told CBS4’s Carey Codd.

Reyka said he figured the guy would take off and he’d be gone. But as the young deputy stood on the lawn of a house in a residential neighborhood with the car less than 15 feet away from him he knew this situation was different.

“(The driver’s) staring at me through the windows,” Reyka recalled. “He’s just staring at me. I’m yelling at him. Completely emotionless.”

In the next moment, Reyka says he was in danger.

“All of a sudden he guns it,” Reyka said. “He comes straight for me.”

Reyka had little time to react and thought there were two possible outcomes.

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“He’s going to hit me and I’m gonna go into the building behind me,” he said. “And one of two things are gonna happen – either I’m not gonna make it or I’m gonna be paralyzed for life.”

Reyka ran for cover and the car clipped his leg. The driver fled and Reyka and a fellow deputy got info that the driver – Darius James – had a warrant for misdemeanor pot possession. Reyka found the car a short distance away and James was arrested. Reyka suffered injuries to his back and hip and missed about six weeks of work but he’s back on the job.

Reyka said he had his gun drawn as the car raced towards him. CBS4 News asked him about his decision not to fire.

“I know what it’s like to grow up with a father who died in the line of duty. I know what it’s like to be married, have a son and not have him there,” he said. “If I have the option of staying alive and catching someone, I’m always gonna choose to stay alive. We can catch him another day.”

Sean Reyka says he’s honored to receive an award for his work but sees it more as award for all the talented men and women he works with and who try to keep our communities safe.

On Tuesday, Reyka will be receive the Silver Cross by BSO Sheriff Scott Israel. He’ll be honored for facing a life or death situation and helping to catch the suspect.

“I feel like I was just doing my job,” he said. “Regardless of who you put in my shoes at that time, I feel like they would have done the same thing.”

Sean Reyka wears his father’s badge number every day. He says he chose to work in Pompano where his father did to carry on his dad’s legacy.

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“I wanted whoever did that to know that we haven’t been defeated,” Reyka said. “We’re still out there. Just because they killed him doesn’t mean it’s over. They didn’t win anything. We’re still out there. I’m still out there, carrying on the legacy and hopefully one day I can fill those shoes.”