Deputy who helped wounded officer hailed as hero

Deputy Osvaldo Petitfrere drove wounded officer to hospital

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. - A Broward Sheriff's Office deputy who drove a police officer to a hospital after she was shot on Florida's Turnpike says he just followed his instincts.

Osvaldo Petitfrere, a 32-year-old deputy who has been with BSO for five years, helped to save the life of Key Biscayne police Officer Nelia Real, who, along with Immigration and Customs Agent Gabriel Martinez, was shot Thursday afternoon on Florida's Turnpike.

Investigators said Real was driving home when she saw what she thought was a traffic crash on Florida's Turnpike near Hollywood Boulevard. She stopped to help, but a gunman shot her through the window of her car, hitting her in the neck, police said.

Martinez pulled up and got out of his car to help, but the gunman shot him in the shoulder.

Petitfrere arrived and pulled Real out of her car, put pressure on her wound, helped her into his vehicle, took shots at the gunman and drove Real to the hospital, police said. An ambulance transported Martinez.

Petitfrere said he was just following his instincts.

"At a time like that, you really don't have time to think. You just react and revert back to your training, and that's pretty much what I did," Petitfrere said. "Every day, when I sit at work, I'm the type of person, I run thousands of scenarios in my head, so it all worked out for the better."

Police said the suspect, David Bradley, 23, fatally shot himself on the Turnpike.

Petitfrere said he does not consider himself a hero, that true heroes are the men and women with whom he served in the military on three tours of duty in Iraq.

"Everybody's calling me a hero and whatnot, but I was just doing what any other law enforcement officer would have done," Petitfrere said.

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