SPOKANE, County--Spokane County Sheriff's Deputy Jeff Thurman won the National Tactical Flight Officer Of The Year Award for his work following a 2012 shooting which injured two deputies.
A supervisor nominated Thurman for his work during the high-speed pursuit, which followed the shooting. He received his award in early July in Florida.
WATCH: Unedited video from Air One showing the pursuit
Two deputies were shot on June 19th 2012 in North Spokane when they topped the vehicle of a wanted drug suspect. Charles Wallace shot the deputies six times and fled the scene. He assaulted an elderly woman and then stole her vehicle.
The Sheriff’s office helicopter, Air One, tracked Wallace as he drove north of the shooting scene. Thurman was one of the crewmembers in the helicopter. Thurman operated the camera and provided information to the ground units about the suspect's location.
The 20 minutes chase ended when Wallace crashed into a patrol car, shot and killed himself.
Sheriff's Office leaders said Thurman used excellent camera control to maintain a visual on Wallace. They also credited Thurman with communicating effectively with his pilot, Jason Snyder, about how he wanted the helicopter positioned.
More than 200 law enforcement units fly aircraft in the U.S.