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San Bernardino officer who said ‘I’ll take a bullet before you do’ doesn’t feel like a hero

Det. Jorge Lozano of the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department speaks at a Dec. 8 news conference, recounting his role in responding to the shootings at the Inland Regional Center on Dec. 2.

Det. Jorge Lozano of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department speaks at a Dec. 8 news conference, recounting his role in responding to the shootings at the Inland Regional Center on Dec. 2.

(Marcus Yam / Los Angeles Times)

“I’ll take a bullet before you do, that’s for damn sure,” an officer assured people last Wednesday as he ushered them out of the Inland Regional Center, where a mass shooting had just taken place.

A video clip containing that assurance quickly hit the Internet.

That officer on Tuesday for the first time talked about the actions that have attracted so much attention.

“I said for them to just calm down, relax. That we were going to do everything we can to get them out of that building,” San Bernardino County sheriff’s Det. Jorge Lozano told reporters.

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People were scared to move down a corridor because they feared they would be shot, he said. His offer to “take a bullet” for them was intended to keep the crowd moving.

“I said what I said,” Lozano added. “And I meant what I said.”

“I don’t feel like a hero whatsoever,” he continued. “Anyone behind me ... would have said the same thing. That’s our job: to put ourselves in the line of danger to protect the community.”

Watch the video below:

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