DPS Troopers honored for service during mass shooting

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FILE – In this Sept. 1, 2019, file photo, a U.S. Mail vehicle, right, which was involved in Saturday’s shooting, sits outside the Cinergy entertainment center in Odessa, Texas. The mass shooting in West Texas spread terror over more than 10 miles (16 kilometers) as the gunman, Seth Aaron Ator, fired from behind the wheel of a car. Ator zigzagged through Midland and Odessa, two closely intertwined cities now brought closer by tragedy. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

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AUSTIN, Texas (Big 2/Fox 24) – Two Department of Public Safety Troopers were honored for their service during the mass shooting between Midland and Odessa back in 2019.

Officials with DPS say Trooper Charles Pryor received a Purple Heart. Troopers Melina Justiss and Justin Basso received the Medal of Valor.

Trooper Pryor stopped the mass shooting suspect’s vehicle on Interstate 20 on August 31, 2019. While stopped, officials say the suspect fired several times at Pryor’s vehicle striking him in the face.

He then got out of the vehicle and took cover while Trooper Justiss arrived on the scene and returned fire with the suspect, a release reads.

As the exchange was taking place, Trooper Pryor was directing drivers away from the scene.

The suspect eventually fled, continuing through Odessa before he was stopped by law enforcement near Cinergy.

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