By Michael Griffin
The 998 that Ed Godfrey and I were in on Cinco de Mayo 1986 was typical Firestone! My first night back from vacation, we were the assisting unit but were closer than the crew with the handle. We had a lady and her kid in the back seat of our unit, giving them a ride home. Rolled by the call and were assisted by two CHP officers, Eric Labont (6'4" 240#) and his partner whose name I cannot recall. South L.A. CHP was excellent back up in those days and we really had a great relationship will all the Beat #1 (FPK) guys and gals from CHP.
The bad guy, Odis Lacy, MN/43, aka Ali Shabazz, was just a crazy guy who wandered in to the Alianza bar, 3 blocks from Firestone station. Odis was waving a knife around and hid next to the door when we pulled up. As soon as Ed walked in, the guy advances on Ed and tries to cut him. Ed aka "Roscoe" Godfrey carried his father's Colt Python .357 in a Hoyt holster. I carried the Dept. Model 15 in a Hoyt..... so needless to say, it did not take us long to clear leather and exercise our right to self defense.
One of the rounds we fired hit the guy right in the heart,,,,, and it still took him 3 or 4 minutes to bleed out. Still hanging on to that knife, so no first aid or CPR was possible. Ed's last round that he fired missed the suspect, went out the open bar door, between CHP Officer Eric Labont's legs and hit the rear door of our radio car...... where the lady and her kid were sitting, waiting for that ride home..... Good thing Eric was so tall, or that round would have hit him in the balls.
Doug Travis' wife, Miriam, was one of the homicide investigators to work our shooting,,, Woody West was her partner,,,,,,, small world. I saw her again, years later at Doug's bedside.
Ed got in another shooting a short time later, taking out a drunk armed with a rifle... at yet another bar, this one on Firestone Blvd. The Brass thought it was appropriate to transfer Ed out of the ghetto, for his own good, because of the back to back (in policy and fully justified) shootings, against his will, so they shipped him off to Industry Station.
The first month Ed was at Industry he is on 245 P.C. containment. The bad guy breaks containment and steals a radio car. Ed sees him, catches him, and shoots him fatally when the guy tries to open Ed up with a butcher's knife, again in policy and fully justified.
They still wouldn't let him come back to FPK! Ed is a Sergeant at Compton Station now and is still a very close friend. Pity he has to carry a Beretta 9mm now... that Python never missed.
The stories will never end……..