Recovering Alexandria Police Officer Returns Home, Visits Department

An Alexandria police officer is home from the hospital two months after being shot in the head during a traffic stop.

Officer Peter Laboy was well enough to visit colleagues at the department Thursday. The motor patrol officers who escorted Laboy home from the hospital Tuesday picked him up again Thursday. He and his wife Suzanne wore Superman T-shirts – Laboy’s nickname during the ordeal -- as they made a visit few dreamed possible after the shooting.

Laboy was shot in the forehead Feb. 27 as he tried to make a traffic stop on a cab driver who'd been behaving suspiciously. Just surviving the night was in doubt then.

“Just watching him recover one week at a time has been amazing,” said Sgt. Brian Thompson, who visited Laboy in the hospital frequently. “From the severe swelling that he had at first all the way down to the point where the next time you go down to see him he’s able to communicate with you, the next time he’s talking to you, now he’s holding a conversation, getting up walking around with you, shaking your hand, making jokes, it’s just been amazing. It really has been miraculous, to say the least.”

Sgt. Michael Kochis, who investigated the shooting, hadn't seen Laboy since the incident.

“I was on the scene that day, and seeing him get out of the vehicle here is just amazing,” he said. “He’s nothing short of a miracle. It’s just great to see him.”

Most of Laboy’s fellow officers have spent the weeks since the shooting holding fundraisers for his family, making meals for them and helping with his children.

When Laboy returned home Tuesday, he was presented with an antique car he’d left behind – now perfectly restored.

“It was very rewarding to see him walk up his driveway, pick up his son and give him a hug,” Thompson said. “I mean that kind of did it for everybody. He’s home. And that’s what we always wanted.”

Friends say Laboy hasn’t lost his sense of humor. He joked with them about whether they were keeping his police motorcycle in top condition.

“The first thing he asked me was, of course, was how’s his motorcycle,” Thompson said. “Is there any damage to his motorcycle or is it going to be OK, and he makes jokes about whether we’ve been riding it and getting it dirty.”

Thursday, so Laboy could see for himself, they made his motorcycle part of the police escort.

Laboy is settling in at home before outpatient therapy begins. He also has surgery coming up to put plates in his skull.

Follow Julie Carey on Twitter at @JulieCareyNBC

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