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Jul 15, 2014 9:41 PM by Kari Beal

Sgt. Ricky Benoit recovering after being shot in the neck

It's been three weeks since a Jennings Police Officer was shot in the neck while on duty, but friends and co-workers said he is recovering in high spirits.

On Monday, June 23rd, Sgt. Ricky Benoit was responding to a domestic dispute on East South Street in Jennings when he was shot. Benoit's partner was able to arrest the suspect identified as 30-year old George Lowdins of Jennings. Lowdins was allegedly hiding in a bathroom closet when he fired the shot at the officer before he tried to run. He's charged with attempted first degree murder of a police officer.

"These are people who put their lives on the line, for very little money and go protect those families. They do it every day. It's 24/7," said Jennings Police Chief Todd D'Albor.

Chief D'Albor said when he arrived on scene of the incident, emotions were high.

"We were worried because of where he was shot. Not many people survive when they are shot in the neck.

Sgt. Ricky Benoit powered through, but with serious injuries. The gunshot wound left him with limited mobility in his neck, arms and legs. Doctors said he is not paralyzed because the bullet did not severe the spinal cord.

"One of the things he wanted me to say to the second officer that was in the house with him was, 'You tell him this was not his fault that this happened,' " D'Albor said.

Benoit has served in law enforcement for over 20 years. Chief D'Albor said Benoit was not just a fellow officer, but a friend and father with a strong heart.

"We don't sign up to not go home, but we sign up knowing what we are getting into. It exemplifies Ricky that he was more worried about others than himself," D'Albor said.

Despite the injuries, D'Albor said Benoit is staying motivated and going through rehabilitation with a positive attitude. He is expected to be in rehabilitation four to six more weeks.

The Jennings Police Association has set up an account for Sgt. Ricky Benoit. All donations can be dropped off at the St. Martin Bank in Jennings --- under the account named "Ricky Benoit Benefit."

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