BOSTON (CBS) – Massachusetts State Police have identified the trooper wounded in a shootout with the man who killed Auburn Police Officer Ronald Tarentino during a traffic stop in May.
State Police said Monday afternoon that Trooper A.J. Kardoos, an 18-year veteran of the department who serves on the Special Tactical Operations (STOP) Team, was the trooper shot by Jorge Zambrano on May 22 in Oxford.READ MORE: I-Team: High School Failure Rates In Massachusetts Jumped During Pandemic
Hours after killing Officer Tarentino on Rochdale Street in Auburn, Jorge Zambrano engaged officers in a shootout inside an Oxford duplex. A neighbor told police Zambrano would not surrender.
“The subject stated ‘no,’ he wanted suicide by cop, he’s not going to come out alive,” said STOP team commander Major Richard Prior.
Trooper Kardoos, a former Navy Seal, was shot in the shoulder by Zambrano, who jumped out of a closet and shot at troopers before they returned fire and killed him.
“I’m not going to lie, it was a lot of pain,” Kardoos said at a press conference Monday afternoon. “I knew what was happening. At that point I was trying to mitigate the rest of the damage and help out my teammates as best I could which was just to get out of their way and get outside where I knew the UMass guys and our own medics were waiting for me.”
The trooper’s left arm was shattered in the shootout. Kardoos praised efforts of on-scene medical responders and applauded the courage of the Tarentino family.READ MORE: 'Had A Heart Of Gold': Construction Worker Killed In Newton Identified As Russell Harron
“I just feel for the family,” he said. “It seems like they’re dealing with it in the best way possible, his kids seem incredible, his wife seems supremely strong.”
Kardoos has three elementary school aged daughters who were all waiting for him in the emergency room the night he was shot. Kardoos said he downplayed the incident by keeping the air light and telling them he’d be just fine.
He said he plans to return to the State Police after his rehabilitation, but said there is no timetable for his recovery.MORE NEWS: 'I Don't Want To Be A Vigilante': Mikayla Miller's Mother Demands Justice At Hopkinton Rally
WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Bernice Corpuz reports