ST. PETERSBUG, Florida - January 24, 2011 was supposed to be a quiet day in St. Petersburg. What the day would eventually hold shocked and saddened the Bay area.
one expected it. In fact, it hadn't happened in more than thirty years
in St. Pete. At the end of the day, two beloved St. Petersburg police officers would,
sadly, be dead: Sgt. Tom Baitinger and Officer Jeff Yaslowitz.
The two officers were killed during a deadly gun battle with a man by the name of Hydra Lacy, who was holed up in a house, firing an endless barrage of bullets at law enforcement, including St. Pete cops and a U.S. Marshal.
In the end, Lacy shot himself.
One man who knows all too well what happens in stand-offs like these is Officer Doug Weaver, who has been with the agency for more than two decades.
He was inside the house that day, face to face with Hydra Lacy. In fact, Officer Weaver went back inside the home four separate times to try and save his buddies.
"That's my job. I wasn't going to leave without them. You cannot let emotion come into play or it could get you killed," said Officer Weaver.
The 23-year veteran said he wasn't nervous that day. He wasn't scared. He just wanted to get Lacy in custody, and get his friends out of the house.
Officer Weaver reflected on the deceased convicted felon. "Do I hate him? Yes. He was a mean, murderous man. Absolutely."
The married father tells 10 News he never once thought he was going to walk in the house and never walk back out again. "I kept my mind focused. That's how you stay alive."
As for the Christopher Dorner scenario out in California, Officer Weaver said the first thing he thought was, "I wanted to help them. You automatically look at that and want to help. They are a large agency, so they had plenty of people."
As for those California officers going into a deadly gunfight? Weaver said, "They did what they needed to do. It's about hope and prayer, and your buddies getting out alive."
Officer Weaver doesn't consider himself a hero, although he's been honored many times. He smiled as he left the interview saying, "I was just doing my job."