Two officers were awarded the highest honor Thursday after stopping a murder suspect inside a Jefferson City hotel.On December 10, 2011, murder suspect Marvin Rice led police on a high-speed chase on Highway 63 through the streets of Jefferson City, after allegedly killing his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend in Dent County earlier that same night. Ofc. Curt Bohanan II from Jefferson City police and Det. Chris Suchanek with the Cole County Sheriff’s office tackled Rice in the Capitol Plaza Hotel.Bohanan was hot on Rice’s trail when he turned into the hotel driveway on West McCarty Street. Rice jumped out of his moving vehicle after the front tire went bare from going over a spike strip, according to police accounts. Ofc. Bohanan recounts his first thoughts when he saw the suspect run into the hotel lobby. “Extreme dread. The last situation I wanted to see was for him to run into a public place with so many people inside. My heart just fell out.”He went in without backup because he said there was no time to waste. Rice tripped and fell in the lobby, but when he turned a corner, Bohanan tells ABC 17 News he lost sight of him. Then gunfire. Rice fired two shots at Bohanan, who allegedly returned fire. The shootout lasted about 36 seconds, said Bohanan, and about seven shots were exchanged on each end. Meanwhile, Det. Suchanek heard the gunshots and stepped out of the ballroom inside the hotel where he was providing security for a holiday party with hundreds of people.The party was about 100-feet away from where the shots were fired. The officer and detective locked eyes and worked together to take the suspect down. The pair had trained together years before when both of them were working for the Cole County Sheriff’s Department. While Ofc. Bohanan continued to exchange fire with Rice, Det. Suchanek went back around, jumped a wall and landed in front of the gunman. “When I got on the second platform, his back was towards me and he was getting ready to fire, and that’s when I fired my weapon,” said Suchanek. That shot immobilized the suspect long enough for the two to take the suspect into custody. The two said the public attention has been overwhelming, and they were just doing their jobs.They modestly received the award with their families and friends cheering them on. When asked about the best part of that night, Ofc. Bohanan said it was keeping the public safe. “I’m just glad that everybody was able to go home. I’m sorry that I ruined their holiday party,” jokes Ofc. Bohanan.
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