Police officer shot in head during Las Vegas protest is paralyzed, family says


LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — An officer who was shot in the head during a Las Vegas protest over the death of George Floyd is paralyzed from the neck down, on a ventilator and unable to speak, according to his family.

The family of officer Shay Mikalonis gave an update on his condition Saturday in a post published on Facebook.

The 29-year-old officer was shot in the head during a protest in front of Circus Circus Hotel & Casino on the evening of June 1.

“Shay is awake and seems to recognize his family members,” the family added. They went on to thank the medical staff at UMC Trauma who have been treating Shay since he was injured earlier this month.

Shay’s family said he’s “tentatively been accepted to one of the best spine rehabilitation centers in the country,” where he will soon continue treatment. The family did not release the name of the center, but will “when the time is right.”

Edgar Samaniego, the man accused of shooting Mikalonis, faces charges of attempted murder with the use of a deadly weapon and two counts of discharging a gun in a prohibited area.

According to Samaniego’s arrest report, he was not part of the protest. He happened to be staying at a nearby Travelodge and fired into the crowd, hitting Mikalonis.

The Injured Police Officer’s Fund (IPOF) held a donation drive for Shay on Thursday and recognized the day as “Shay Day.” Thousands of community members showed up and donated money or bought T-shirts to help with Mikalonis’ medical expenses.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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