A hero cop from Westchester who has already been lauded for taking a bullet in the jaw in the line of duty has been named the 2018 Woman of Distinction by the 35th Senate District in New York.
Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins recently announced the distinction for Yonkers Police Officer Kayla Maher, who was shot in the jaw as she approached two suspected criminals in a car last year.
This distinction is given to “exceptional women who have demonstrated excellence and improved the lives of residents in their communities and throughout the state.” The New York State Senate acknowledged her contributions during a ceremony in Albany last week.
Shortly after 8 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 25 last year, officers, including Maher was dispatched to the area of Marshall Road, near Ridge Drive, following reports of a suspicious vehicle that was occupied by two suspects.
Upon her arrival, one of the suspects produced a gun, and started shooting at Maher, who returned fire. The officer, who was from the 3rd Precinct, was struck in the face by gunfire. Maher was released from the hospital just hours after being struck by the bullet.
Earlier this year, Maher was promoted to detective, and the Detectives Crime Clinic of Metropolitan New Jersey and New York named her an “Outstanding Law Enforcement Professional.” Maher also received the 2018 Law and Order Front Line Award. She is a member of the Police Emerald Society of Westchester and the Fraternal Order of the Police.
“Detective Kayla Maher is a phenomenal woman and a true hero,” Stewart-Cousins said. “Last year, Kayla responded to a call with her partner about a suspicious vehicle, and as they approached, they came under fire, and Kayla was shot in the face.
“Thankfully, Kayla made a full recovery, and she has since been promoted to Detective. She continues to serve the residents of Yonkers in this capacity, and her commitment to protecting her community is unyielding. She is an exceptional woman and inspiration to me personally - and she has truly earned her place among the 2018 Women of Distinction.”
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