Retired NYPD officer helped stop UNC Charlotte gunman

CHARLOTTE, North Carolina (WABC) -- A former NYPD officer is being hailed a hero for his role to help stop the mass shooting that left two people dead at a North Carolina college.

Retired Det. Rich Gundacker is now a patrol sergeant for UNC Charlotte police and disarmed the shooter on the day of the attack.

When the gunman opened fire, a student named Riley Howell attempted to stop him and shielded other students with his body.

Howell was killed, but his brave actions allowed Gundacker to grab the shooter's weapon.

His efforts were noted by Police Commissioner James O'Neill on Thursday morning.

"Once they leave the NYPD, it's still with them," O'Neill said. "I'm really proud that he was able to do that and stop the shooter from killing more people."

Gundacker, trained by ESU, retired from the NYPD in 2015 after 20 years on the force.

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