Estill Police Officer Quincy Smith called it the best $30 he ever spent: a pair of camera glasses he purchased for himself on Amazon.
Those glasses were on and recording last year, when Smith was shot multiple times while responding to a robbery call at a convenience store.
But his glasses captured more than just the shocking violence, including a bystander rushing to Smith’s aid as well as his emotional plea to the dispatcher.
“Tell my family I love them,” Smith begged over the radio while slumped over next to his patrol car, suffering from gunshot wounds to his neck, arms, and torso.
The shooting took place just after 11 a.m. on Jan. 1, 2016 when Smith responded to calls from a store in Hampton County, S.C. of a man attempting to snatch groceries from customers.
Shortly after arriving, he confronted the man customers had described to him, later identified as 29-year-old Malcolm Antwan Orr, walking down the street while talking on his cellphone. After repeatedly requesting that Orr stop, Officer Smith drew his directed energy weapon and demanded that he take his right hand out of his pocket.
In an instant, Orr pulled a 9mm pistol from that pocket and opened fire, striking Smith three times at point-blank range as he crawled back to his cruiser.
WATCH: Camera glasses show Officer Smith’s shocking confrontation with an armed robbery suspect.
The bullets broke two bones in Smith’s arm, severed a vein in his neck, and passed through his upper torso.
Once back inside his patrol car Smith begged for backup, blood-covered hands fumbling with the radio controls as he tried to alert his dispatcher.
“Dispatch I am hit! Dispatch I am hit!” Smith screamed. “My left arm is broken. I’ve been shot in the neck.”
After radioing in his location and the suspect’s description, the wounded officer slumped down on the ground next to his cruiser.
That’s when a passerby came to Smith’s aid.
His voice fading as he continues to lose blood, Smith then makes an emotional appeal to his dispatcher.
“Tell my family I love them.”
WATCH: Bystander rushes to Officer Smith’s aid after he was shot multiple times
Thankfully, Smith was able to tell his family himself. Paramedics arrived on scene shortly afterwards and were able to save the officer’s life despite the serious nature of his wounds.
“If but not for the grace of God and some very good doctors, this would not only have been a murder case, but a death penalty case,” 14th Circuit Solicitor Duffie Stone said in a statement.
On Wednesday, a jury found Orr guilty of attempted murder and possessing a weapon in a violent crime. He was given the maximum possible sentence under the law of 35 years in prison.
-With files from the Associated Press