Seattle Police Officer awarded Medal of Valor

Seattle Police Officer awarded Medal of Valor
Seattle Police Officer Britt Sweeney, left, and Officer Ben Kelly are seen at the National Officer's Memorial in Washington, D.C.
SEATTLE -- Seattle Police Officer Britt Sweeney has been awarded the Medal of Valor for the courage she displayed on the night her training officer was gunned down.

Sweeney was riding in a patrol car with Officer Timothy Brenton last Halloween when a man pulled up next to them and opened fire.

Brenton, 39, was killed instantly. His trainee officer, 33-year-old Britt Sweeney, was grazed by several bullets and was able to return fire.

For her actions, the International Association of Women Police chose to honor Sweeney by awarding her the medal at the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Center in Burien on Wednesday.

"Officer Sweeney's performance was commensurate with that of a seasoned officer, rather than a rookie officer with only six weeks on the street," the IAWP said. "In the face of great personal danger, Officer Sweeney displayed courage and heroism which proved to be instrumental in capturing a brutal killer."

According to Seattle police, the award is given to an officer "who distinguishes herself by an act of bravery or heroism, at risk of her own personal safety or in the face of great danger, above and beyond the call of duty," and its recipients are selected by the IAWP Board of Directors.

Christopher Monfort is accused in the shooting death of Brenton. King County prosecutor Dan Satteberg said he will seek the death penalty against the accused cop killer.

Monfort is also charged with first-degree arson in connection with the Oct. 22, 2009 firebombing of four Seattle police vehicles at a city maintenance yard. Monfort has pleaded not guilty to all charges.