At a special ceremony held in Lansing last week, Michigan State Police (MSP) Director Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue presented Sgt. Brian Keely of the Rockford Post and Tpr. Carlos Fossati of the Wayland Post with the MSP Bravery Award for their diligence and perseverance under uncommon circumstances and for going beyond what is typically expected of most law enforcement officers.
On November 18, 2015, a subject abducted his ex-wife from work at gunpoint and held her hostage in a hotel room in Benton Harbor. The MSP Emergency Support (ES) Team responded and initiated negotiations. Within 30 minutes, a reactionary team assembled in the hallway of the hotel, of which Keely and Fossati were part.
While waiting, they heard a gunshot and a scream, at which time they entered the hotel room to perform a hostage rescue.
Upon entering the doorway, the subject fired on the team, striking Keely in the ballistic vest. Despite the gunfire, Keeley and Fossati continued to advance into the room while returning fire, killing the man and rescuing the woman.
In awarding the department’s Bravery Award, the MSP Board of Awards found that the courageous and heroic actions of Keely and Fossati undoubtedly saved the woman’s life.
Keely enlisted with the department in 1998, graduating as a member of the 117th Trooper Recruit School. Prior to serving at the Rockford Post, Keely was assigned to the Ypsilanti and Detroit posts, as well as the Recruiting Section and Second District Fugitive Team.
Fossati enlisted with the department in 2004, graduating as a member of the 120th Trooper Recruit School. Prior to serving at the Wayland Post, Fossati was assigned to the South Haven Post.