Teen Says Detective's Death Inspired Her to Serve


GENOA -- Detective Keith Dressel's shooting death last week is affecting people in many different ways.  For some, it's awakening a new-found courage.  Fifteen-year-old Emily Hofelich is still two years away from graduating from high school, but she already knows that she wants to become a police officer.  Emily says the death is sad, but she's inspired by Keith Dressel's ultimate sacrifice, and she wants to follow down the same career path.

Thousands of police officers are expected to converge for Dressel's funeral at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church.  After the service, they will form a long procession to St. Anthony Cemetery.

Detective Dressel was shot and killed last Wednesday after a confrontation in north Toledo.  Police say Dressel and two other undercover officers confronted 15-year-old Robert Jobe and 19-year-old Sherman Powell on Ontario Street around 2:00am.  Jobe and Powell ran, and when Dressel caught up to Jobe, police say Jobe pulled a .38 caliber Smith & Wesson and fired once, hitting Dressel in the chest.

The other two officers tackled Powell and took him into custody.  Jobe ran from the scene, then turned himself in shortly after 11:00am that same day.  Both Jobe and Powell are in jail, awaiting further court action.

She's only a sophomore at Genoa High School, but Emily Hofelich says she already knows what her course of study will be when she goes to college.  "I see it in law enforcement. I've thought of a lot of things, about being a writer, maybe landscaping, but nothing quite appeals to me as being a police officer," said Hofelich.

Like most of us, Emily says she was shocked by the Dressel's death, but she says it makes her want to do the job even more.  "I would like to be one of those people, and doing what he did. He saved lives, every day so, I'd like to do that," she said.

Emily's mother is providing both comfort and support to her daughter during this difficult time.  "She was upset about it, I mean she identifies with police officers for whatever reason because that's what she wants to do, so to hear something like that, she was crushed," said Michelle Hofelich, Emily's mother.

"I just thought that he was brave and you need more people like that in the world," said Emily.  "It's a job that needs to be done, and if there's people willing to do it, then that's all that matters."

Count on News 11 and WTOL.COM for complete coverage of Detective Keith Dressel's funeral, beginning at 10:00am Monday.

Posted by AEB