A Fort Worth police officer critically injured in a shootout went home Tuesday amongst pomp and circumstance.
Officer Matt Pearce was released from John Peter Smith Hospital nearly two months after being shot while chasing a fugitive and his son in March.
“That day, being unsure if Matt was going to live, weighs heavy on those who wear the uniform every day. We don't know whether we're going home and that day we didn't know if Matt was going home,” said Sgt. Marc Povero.
Pearce was shot five times on March 15 as he helped serve a warrant out of Parker County. Ed Russel McIver Sr. was shot and killed during the shootout. His son, Ed Russell McIver Jr., was with him and is in jail charged with attempted capital murder.
“Thankfully Matt Pearce is alive and will get to go testify and tell his side of the story. McIver will get his day in court,” said FWPD Chief Joel Fitzgerald.
Pearce spent four weeks in ICU at JPS and then was moved to in-patient therapy. Pearce will have more rehab at home.
Pearce wants go back to work as a tactical medical officer to provide the kind of help that saved his life when he was lying in wounded in the brush near a barbed wire fence.
Pearce didn't say anything on camera Tuesday, but in a statement said, “We are grateful for the incredible community which in response to our crisis has brought us through the darkest time of our lives.”
In a video posted by the Fort Worth Police Department, Pearce said “I just want to thank y’all. Like I said, just anytime you think you can’t do it, just keep fighting.”
Nearly $200,000 has been raised through community efforts to support Pearce and his family.