Whiteside County deputy returns to work after being shot while on duty

Published: Aug. 1, 2022 at 4:10 PM CDT
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WHITESIDE COUNTY, Ill. (KWQC) - A Whiteside County deputy is back to work this week after being injured in the line of duty.

Whiteside County deputy Derek Hamstra was shot in the foot on September 27, 2021, when a bullet was inadvertently fired from an Illinois State trooper’s weapon while they were pursuing two suspects, according to Whiteside County Sheriff John Booker.

The incident happened at Hillside and Fulfs roads, where Hamstra and an Illinois state trooper attempted to find two suspects. The bullet was inadvertently fired by the trooper, striking Hamstra’s left foot. The two suspects were later apprehended.

“There were points where I never knew if I was going to be back being as injured as I was,” Hamstra said.

Throughout his ten-month recovery, his family said the Whiteside County Sheriff’s Department was at his side.

“You know that no matter what happens, they have your back no questions asked. If we called any of them even before this happened, people would be lining up if I needed anything and if Derek needed anything,” said Brianne Hamstra, Derek’s wife.

On Monday, the deputy was also promoted to sergeant by Sheriff John Booker.

“Through hard work, dedication, and his family support, Derek is recovered and back with the sheriff’s office. Today is officially his first day back on duty,” said Booker, “This is the true meaning of a law enforcement officer and dedication to this career.”

Hamstra said he’s grateful for the sheriff’s trust and is looking forward to getting back to work.

“When you start your career you don’t really know where it’s going to take you so to have reached a milestone like this it means everything to me,” Hamstra said.

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