On February 16th, 2012, in Clay County, Florida, Detective Matt Hanlin and Detective David White approached the front door of a suspected meth lab. One of the occupants immediately fired shots at them. Detective White was killed instantly by a gunshot wound, and Detective Hanlin was seriously injured. The suspect fled through the house to the back door, where he was shot and killed by another Narcotics Unit officer.
Hanlin knew he was badly hit by the amount of blood pumping from his upper left arm. The shot had passed through his bicep, severing his brachial artery, and into his ABA XT01 body armor. Hanlin’s fellow officers used a belt for a tourniquet to staunch the blood flow, and surgeons were able to stop the bleeding. The doctors observed that if Hanlin had sustained internal damage as well, he probably would not have survived, and they credited his ABA armor with saving his life. Detective Matt Hanlin became SAVE #1792 of The Safariland Group SAVES CLUB®.
“After a few months of thinking about everything, I sat down with my family and I told them I wanted to go back to work,” said Hanlin. “And I knew that’s where I wanted to go but I didn’t want to make it a selfish decision. They told me, you know, we’d be real proud of you if you went back to work. So they made my decision easy.” -Detective Matt Hanlin