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Posted: November 26, 2010 12:00 a.m.

Officers honored as Men of Valor

By Brittany Thomas /

Two law enforcement officers were recently honored by the Newton County Rotary Club for their valiant efforts late last year that saved the lives of other officers from a gunman on the interstate.

Covington Police Officer Anthony Walden and Georgia State Patrol Trooper Shane Allen were both given the Award of Valor.

They were involved in a chase on Interstate 20 last October in which a 25-year-old Conyers man, Marvin Mercier, was driving nearly 100 mph. Mercier refused to stop and got on and off the interstate once before he was stopped by police.

When a trooper approached, Mercier began shooting through his windshield. Allen and Walden both got to the scene simultaneously and positioned themselves behind a car and returned fire, saving the troopers. Inside the vehicle was a young woman who was crouched in the front floorboard.

Mercier had a warrant for his arrest out of Rockdale County.

"This was a threat to our officers and they acted appropriately and stopped the threat," said Covington Police Public Information Officer Lt. Wendell Wagstaff at the time.

For their acts of bravery in the face of such terror, both men were honored at Rotary Tuesday afternoon. The award of valor is their profession’s highest award for heroism in the line of duty.

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