A Boise Police Department lieutenant who risked his life last year to save an elderly man has been named one of the country's top cops by the National Association of Police Organizations.
Lt. Alan Cavener, who recently retired from the department, traveled to Washington D.C. to accept the award.
He was off duty Aug. 11, and driving with his wife on I-84 near Eagle Road when he spotted a car headed east in the westbound lanes. The vehicle was driving very slowly into oncoming traffic, causing other drivers to slam on their brakes and swerve to avoid a collision.
Cavener, who was in his squad car, pulled onto the shoulder and turned on his lights and siren in an attempt to notify the wrong-way driver. But the driver, who police say was elderly and appeared confused, kept coming.
That's when Cavener jumped out of his car, hopped over the concrete barrier, and ran onto the interstate. He had to sprint across several lanes of traffic as cars swerved around him. When he got to the wrong way driver, Cavener convinced the man to roll down his window, then grabbed the wheel.
The lieutenant was able to safely steer the car to the shoulder, avoiding a collision. Meridian Police then responded and took over.
Boise police say Cavener's quick thinking and bravery likely saved the wrong-way driver and other motorists on the road.
In addition to being named one of NAPO's top cops, Cavener also received the Boise Police Department's Police Silver Star.