Officers recall US gurdwara gunman: ‘Evil on mission’

Recalling the August 5 shooting incident at a Gurdwara in Wisconsin, two US police officers who helped save several lives described the white supremacist gunman an "evil" with a "mission".

In their first television interviews, Police Lt Brian Murphy and Officer Sam Lenda recalled the horror of that day when Wade Michael Page with a nine millimeter semi-automatic pistol walked into the Gurdwara in Oak Creek and started shooting.

The CBS Evening News aired the first television interview with these officer on Tuesday night and showed newly-released footage from the attack at the Sikh Temple.

The new video shows the moments after Lenda shot gunman Page, 40, who had just shot six temple members and wounded four others, including Murphy.

Lenda hit Page at a range of 60 yards. The wounded gunman shot himself in the head. "My thought was, 'If I can't shoot him, I'm gonna run him over, but he's not leaving this parking lot and he's not getting back inside the church," Lenda said.

"He was on a mission. I say, I confronted evil in the parking lot. And evil was not gonna leave there."

Murphy was the first officer to arrive at the scene and was shot 12 times, with three other shots hitting his bulletproof vest. Murphy said he is lucky to be alive.

"I went to see the neurologist about the bullet stuck in my skull. And he just looked at all my X-rays and he said, 'That's a miracle,'" Murphy said. "You can call it divine intervention. You can call it dumb luck. I'll happily take either one."

Murphy said Page showed no emotion. "I had expected there to be, like, most people, some kind of — whether it's excitement or anger or something. But there was nothing," Murphy said.

About two dozen people were hiding in and around the temple when Officer Lenda — the best marksman on the force - raced to the scene.

... contd.

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