Security guard describes shooting inside Seattle bank
FIRCREST, Wash. -- A security guard shot during a struggle inside a Seattle bank is now out of the hospital, and talking about the ordeal for the very first time.
To hear him tell it, Bruce Golphenee was just doing his job. However, his actions that day may have saved lives, all because he was willing to risk his own.
"Kind of one of those fight for your life type things, as well as everybody else's life," Golphenee said as he recuperates in his Fircrest apartment.
Golphenee said he always knew the risks of the job but never thought he'd be put to such a test. On July 24th, while working as a security guard outside a Bank of America branch in Seattle's Central District, Golphenee said he got ambushed by a man who was dead-set to take his gun.
"I'm trying to slam this dude up against the wall, trying to fight him off, and this boy's just not giving up," he said.
Golphenee remembers taking at least ten blows to his head, and the struggle became so fierce that he shattered his ankle fending off the man. Within moments, he found himself in a fight for his life.
"I feel his arm coming down my side toward my weapon," he said.
The 45-year-old father said he tried to protect the holstered gun, but got overpowered. Suddenly finding himself disarmed, Golphenee said his one thought was to protect the people at the bank by forcing the barrel toward the ceiling or floor.
"Just got to do what you have to do to protect yourself as well as others within the building," he said.
Three shots went errant. The fourth blew off a finger on Golphenee's left hand. The fifth punched through his back, causing massive internal injuries. Golphenee collapsed, hoping that sixth and final round wouldn't find him, his family consuming his final thoughts.
"Kind of kept praying to God that it's not my time, it's not my time," he said. "I'm not done raising kids."
Seattle police said the suspect instead turned the gun on himself, leaving him in critical condition.
Since the ordeal, Golphenee's family has launched a fund-raising effort for his mounting bills. He's also in desperate need of a wheelchair. The KOMO 4 Problem Solvers spoke to many people who call Golphenee a hero. Now this hero needs a little help.
Anyone who would like to help Golphenee can do so here.