DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – It's been more than two months since a man opened fire on Daytona Beach Police officer Kevin Hird.
According to police, 40-year-old Raymond Roberts was roaming a neighborhood armed with an AK-47. News 6 sat down with Hird to find out how he's doing, and to learn his perspective on the power of a firearm.
"Anybody who's going to put on a uniform, badge and a gun every day and come out to work, leave your family to protect everyone else, says a lot about that person. It's not a lot of money, so I definitely feel it has to be a calling," Hird said.
On Nov. 25, 2018, Hird responded to a call involving a man armed with an assault rifle and was shot in the arm. As a Marine who's in law enforcement, Hird takes firearms seriously because he knows it's an important tool for his job.
"We need it for situations like this and others. Especially, with all these shootings going on, school shootings and all that. Without, firearms (officers) wouldn't be able to protect ourselves," he said.
Hird also believes police officers shouldn't be the only ones to legally carry guns.
"If you can legally own a firearm, get a firearm and not just get it but be proficient with it. Train yourself up on it, know how to use it safely and carry it every day. You never want to be a victim," Hird said. "Your Second Amendment to bear arms is definitely something that should be exercised. If you can't protect yourself, how can you protect your family?"
Hird is currently on desk duty, that includes training new recruits. He's also hitting the gun range to keep his aim sharp. The 28-year-old officer continues to wear a brace on his wrist to support his shoulder after the bullet severed his nerve but says this incident doesn't change his attitude or relationship with guns.
"I'm not angry, I feel no animosity towards it. I feel like they're the bad guy, I'm the good guy. I mean, it's our job to get them. It's their job to try and get away. That's just the way life is, unfortunately," he said. "Protect life and liberty. That's all we're here to do."