Monday, March 20, 2023

OPD Presents Two Oxford Women with Citizen’s Valor Award

By Alyssa Schnugg

News editor

OPD Investigator Scott Hollowell, left, and OPD Chief Jeff McCutchen, far right, presented the OPD Citizen’s Valor Award to Jessica Bray and Shay Zinnecker Tuesday for their quick and brave actions during a recent shooting incident. Photo by the OPD

Two local women were recognized by the Oxford Police Department Tuesday and presented with the department’s Citizen’s Valor Award for their quick actions during a shooting incident.

OPD Chief Jeff McCutchen presented the award to Shay Zinnecker and Jessica Bray before the Oxford Board of Aldermen during their regular meeting Tuesday.

According to McCutchen, OPD was dispatched on June 8 to the parking lot of Delta Dog in reference to a call for shots being fired.

“It was reported one person was shot and multiple shots were still being fired,” McCutchen said. “Shay Zinnecker and Jessica Bray were called to the area by their friend. They began trying to get their friend to safety. As more shots were fired, they did not focus on their own safety but solely focused on their friend who they navigated to a safe area.”

Once they were able to get the victim inside a safe location, the two women applied a makeshift tourniquet to her wound. The victim’s injury was non-life-threatening.

“When our first-responders arrived the victim was in stable condition and in good spirits because of the quick and brave actions of Shay Zinnercker and Jessica Bray,” McCutchen said.

A man who lives in a house behind the shopping center, Michael Burt, 69, allegedly shot the victim when she was getting out of her car and then continued to keep shooting for unknown reasons. He was arrested and has been charged with felony aggravated assault.

Mayor Robyn Tannehill thanked Zinnecker and Bray for their selfless actions in helping their friend.

“I’m just so touched at the way you put your lives at risk for your friend and I wish we had a million more citizens that are just like y’all. Thank you for making a difference and we’re so proud of you.”