Four Brockton officers were honored for bravery Monday at the Statehouse. William Carpenter and Matthew Graham received the Medal of Honor and officers Thomas Hyland and Edward Cruickshank received the Medal of Valor. They were among 27 police officers and one state trooper who were given the highest honors given to law enforcement in the state.
Officers William Carpenter and Matthew Graham saw a handgun pointed at them by a suspect they chased down during a drug arrest.
The suspect misfired at Carpenter and was later shot dead by the officers.
Nearly a year later, Gov. Deval Patrick awarded the Medal of Honor to the two Brockton officers for their bravery. The men were honored in front of family members, friends and colleagues at the Statehouse on Monday.
Carpenter and Graham were joined by fellow Brockton officers Thomas Hyland and Edward Cruickshank, who were awarded the Medal of Valor during the 26th annual Hanna Awards, named in honor of Trooper George L. Hanna, who was shot and killed in 1983 by three suspects during a traffic stop in Auburn.
The four Brockton officers were among 27 local officers and one state trooper who were given the highest honors given to law enforcement in the state.
“It’s certainly nice to see them recognized for the bravery and heroism they displayed,” said Brockton Police Chief William Conlon. “They are true heroes for the city of Brockton.”
The officers were humbled by the awards and would only offered very few words about their accomplishments.
“It’s nice to be appreciated,” Hyland said. “It’s the kind of thing you necessarily don’t want to be part of it because you fear the recognition because so many people deserve it."
Hyland and Cruickshank were honored for an incident in January 2008, in which three Boston men led police on a 13-mile chase from Brockton to Quincy and opened fire on two of the cruisers before crashing on Newport Avenue in Quincy and being arrested.
Carpenter and Graham were honored for an incident in November 2008, when a suspect pointed a gun at the officers and refused to put it down.
“I never thought I’d be here in a million years,” Graham said. “It means a lot to myself and the other officers. There’s a lot of other officers that deserve to be here.”
The Monday awards come after 20 Brockton officers and a state trooper were honored Thursday by the Massachusetts Police Association in Springfield for their work in capturing Keith Luke, accused of killing two people, critically wounding a third and then shooting at police during a chase.
The arrest of Luke occurred after the cutoff period for the Hanna Awards. The officers will be eligible for that award next year.