ST. LOUIS – A family is asking for prayers after a St. Louis police officer was shot while attending a high school reunion.
Detective Shawn Cleveland, 28, was among five people shot when a fight broke out at Normandy High School in early October.
“He looked at his mom and said, ‘I’ve been shot.’ Because she was there, probably about 10 feet away from him,” said Michael Cleveland, the detective’s father.
Cleveland’s son was trying to break up a fight, but his calls were ignored.
Shots rang out and he was shot. The bullet went through Det. Cleveland’s chest, and exited his back, his father said.
“I stopped and I prayed to the Lord before I even walked out of the house. And I said, ‘Lord, this is in your hands. And please help my son. Save my son’s life,’” his father said.
The father’s prayers were answered. Detective Cleveland survived. Recovery has been slow but the response has been immediate.
“How they’ve looked after my son. How they’ve called on him, how they’ve made errands on him, and how they’ve also checked on the family. It’s outstanding. Chief Hayden was there the night of. Captain Moore was there the night of,” Michael Cleveland said.
Michael Cleveland said he is grateful for the extended family from the department, as well as the one at the family’s Florissant church, where he is a pastor.
“Our relationship with Jesus Christ as our Lord and savior has been the anchor during this whole time,” Cleveland said. “It allows us to forgive the perpetrator who shot our son. It allows us to have hope for our son going forward. And being there for him. It also allows us to see things through a wider lens.”
It is unclear when Detective Cleveland will return to work. His family said he can walk and handle basic tasks, but it is too early to say whether he is ready to return.