UPDATE: Doctors have determined that Springfield-Greene County Park Ranger Robert Bridges will not be released from the hospital Monday.
When he is released, he will be escorted home as he continues to recover from injuries sustained in last week’s officer-involved shooting near Glenstone and Battlefield.
The timing of his release is currently undetermined.
Original Story: A park ranger hit by several shots fired by a suspect near Battlefield and Glenstone in Springfield will get an escort home from the hospital on Monday.
Here are the details in a news release from the Springfield-Greene County Park Board:
Springfield-Greene County Park Ranger Robert Bridges will be escorted home from the hospital this afternoon, Monday, Nov. 15, as he continues to recover from injuries sustained in the Nov. 11 officer-involved shooting near the intersection of South Glenstone and East Battlefield.
Exact timing is not yet known, but the procession is expected to begin between 12 and 2 p.m. Once the procession has begun, the Park Board will announce on Facebook and Twitter.
Bridges, 52, was providing backup to Springfield Police Department officers when he was hit by several shots fired by a suspect. Officials with the Springfield-Greene County Park Board say Bridges’ Kevlar duty vest probably saved his life, but he faces a long recovery from other injuries. Bridges has served as a park ranger about a year and a half, with 17 years of previous law enforcement experience.
Springfield Police are investigating the incident. All questions about the incident should be directed to the Springfield Police Department.
Following release from Cox Medical Center South in Springfield, Bridges will be escorted home by Springfield-Greene County Park Rangers, Springfield Police Department, Greene County Sheriff’s Office and Missouri Highway Patrol Troop D, with multiple area law enforcement agencies, fire departments and EMTs joining the procession as it makes it way to Bridges’ home in Stone County.
The planned route from Cox South is west on Primrose Street, south on Campbell Avenue, continuing south on Missouri 13/US 160 into Christian and Stone County, then west on Missouri 76 at Reeds Spring. Motorists are asked to yield to the procession, and the public is encouraged observe and cheer as the procession passes. Please do not park on the roadway.
“We are incredibly relieved that Ranger Bridges is able to go home today,” said Director of Parks Bob Belote. “We invite our community to show support for our first responders and help lift Ranger Bridges’ spirits as he heads home to continue his recovery. And we thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers for Ranger Bridges and his family, as well as the Springfield Police Officers involved in this incident.”
Springfield-Greene County Park Rangers are law enforcement officers, commissioned through the Greene County Sheriff’s Department and dispatched through 911. Park Rangers have jurisdiction in both the city and county, not limited to parks. While on patrol, rangers often provide backup to officers with Springfield Police, Greene County Sheriff’s Department, area School Resource officers, Airport Police and other agencies within Greene County.