Tri-State officer shot in head beats survival odds, describes ‘wild’ recovery

Eric Ney suffered the gunshot wound that nearly killed him during a deadly officer-involved shooting in July.
Published: Nov. 23, 2022 at 10:51 PM EST
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CLEARCREEK TOWNSHIP, Ohio (WXIX) - A Clearcreek Township police officer who was shot in the head returned home last month. Now Officer Eric Ney is speaking with Trica Macke in his first interview since the shooting.

“I can’t remember exactly what they said,” Ney said of those first hours hospitalized, “but I should not have made it through the night. The doctor said he’d never seen anything like it.”

Ney, a 14-year police veteran, suffered a gunshot wound while responding to a domestic violence situation on July 12.

The man who shot Ney, 65-year-old Mark Evers was himself shot by Sgt. Nicole Cordero, Clearcreek Township Police Chief John Terrill said back in July.

Ney says he’d been out there to Evers’ place several times over the years. He says the last thing he remembers is Evers filling out a statement.

A medical helicopter flew Ney to Miami Valley Hospital in critical condition, though he was reportedly breathing on his own.

“I woke up and I wasn’t myself,” he said. “I was kind of out of it in a different personality and kind of wild behavior.”

The officer’s condition improved markedly over the next week, but he says he didn’t begin to feel normal until months later.

“It was almost October, late September, early October, before I can remember stuff,” he said. “They said I started making sense, pretty much came to.”

The bullet went through Ney’s head and exited in front of his ear. It damaged his optic nerve and impacted his vision out of his left eye.

“Everything was just a big blur. I couldn’t see anything at first,” he said.

Ney was discharged from a rehab center on July 30 but was readmitted to the ICU on Aug. 7 with several blood clots and pneumonia.

Doctors then discovered a hole in his skull allowing excess air into his brain. He had a temporary stent surgically installed, which doctors removed in early September.

Ney began physical and speech therapy a week later.

Months later, neither he nor his family use the word “luck.” But Ney, a God-fearing man, does have a newfound purpose in life having survived the bullet that, a little this way or that, could easily have killed him.

“He’s got something for me to do, and I’m gonna make sure I find out what that is, and it gets done,” he said.

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