Oxford resident Lawana Lovell received the fourth annual Chris Wright Crime Stopper of the Year Award Tuesday night, according to a release from the Sheriff’s Office issued Wednesday.
When asked by phone Wednesday how she felt about receiving the honor, Lovell said she was appreciative, but she didn’t do anything special.
Lovell said she had been driving to pick up her daughter-in-law in December of 2012 when she heard an announcement from Oxford police on a radio station. Police were asking residents to help them locate a vehicle being driven by gunman Romero Roberto Moya.
According to police, Moya shot his three brothers to death and shot his son before leading officers on a chase from Cleburne to Calhoun County, where he then shot and injured Heflin police officer Jackie Stovall.
Lovell said that when she noticed a vehicle that matched the description officers had broadcast, she called Oxford police. Police told her to follow the car and give them details, which she did, she said.
“I really didn’t realize that the guy was as dangerous as he was,” she said Wednesday, adding that if she had known, she probably wouldn’t have followed him.
“I’m not that brave of a person,” she said. “I’m glad that they stopped him because he was dangerous, and he probably would have killed more people.”
The suspect was later killed by police.
Amerson said in a press release Wednesday that Lovell’s courage and observation truly made her a deserving recipient of the award, which was named after the host of Calhoun County Crime Stoppers television program.
“Because of her courageous decision and decisive action, officers were able to locate the suspect and prevent further acts of violence,” Amerson said in the release.
Lovell said Wednesday that she believes citizens should help law enforcement officials in their community.
“I really don’t feel like I did anything that any other citizen would have done,” she said.
Staff writer Madasyn Czebiniak: 256-235-3546. On Twitter @MCzebiniak_Star.