Third officer hurt in NJ station shooting released

December 30, 2012 3:25:21 PM PST
Sgt. Jim Garber, the third Gloucester Township officer wounded in Friday's police station shootout, has been released from the hospital and his community showed its appreciation.

Fire trucks lined the neighborhood and so did more than 100 people who couldn't wait for this moment.

It was a motorcycle procession for one of the township's finest police Sergeant Jim Garber who received a welcome home celebration like none other.

The 13-year Gloucester Township Police veteran was one of three officers shot inside the police station Friday when investigators say stalking suspect Eddie Jones got an officer's gun and started a shoot out.

Jones was killed.

Garber was hit below his bulletproof vest and underwent emergency surgery.

This afternoon with a large crowd of officers, firefighters, EMTs and neighbors cheering him on, Garber returned home with his wife by his side.

"Living in the township and knowing that three officers were shot, it made us sick to begin with, but to know it was someone we knew, it was worse," family friend Donna Hunt said.

Officer Ruth Burns and Sergeant Kevin Thyne who attended Garber's celebration were also injured.

Their chief says what we saw today could have been a different type of procession.

"As we approach the New Year, we are blessed that all three officers are coming home and recovering very well," Chief Harry Earle said.

And as he continues his recovery, Sgt. Garber took a moment to thank the community and his fellow officers for their support.

"I'm impressed but that's why I do this because of everybody here," Garber said.

The police chief says there's no timetable for Garber and his fellow two officers to return to work but they will be back.

The shooting remains under investigation.


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