The wife of a Fremont police officer who was shot and critically wounded trying to arrest a suspect in Oakland last week said Friday her "whole life turned upside down" when she learned he had been shot.
Speaking with a trembling voice to reporters at Highland Hospital in Oakland, where 39-year-old Officer Todd Young is still recovering from his gunshot wounds, Nicole Young said doctors initially told her that her husband "wouldn't make it off the operating table."
But, she said, Dr. Javid Sadjadi is a "miracle worker" because he and other members of the trauma team at Highland Hospital were able to save Young's life. Young remains heavily sedated and is still in serious but stable condition.
"Todd actually called me" after he had been shot, Nicole Young said, and he insisted that he not be put under anesthesia until after he'd had a chance to talk to her.
"He told me that he was OK and had been hit in the leg," she said.
Young, however, actually suffered significant bladder and stomach injuries, Sadjadi said. One of the two bullets that hit him entered through his right groin and exited his lower back.
Sadjadi said Young "has a very good prognosis" but is "certainly not out of the woods yet" because of the threat of infection and urinary tract issues.
The doctor said Young has undergone four surgeries so far and will have to undergo at least one more, possibly even three more.
Young will also have to participate in physical therapy once he recovers, Sadjadi said.
He said Young hasn't been able to talk to anyone but "should be able to communicate soon."
Young was shot at about 2:30 p.m. on Aug. 27 when he and fellow Officer Eric Tang attempted to arrest a suspected gang members in East Oakland.
The two officers were working in Oakland as part of the Southern Alameda County Major Crimes Task Force and had a warrant for the arrest of 20-year-old Union City resident Andrew Barrientos.
Barrientos allegedly shot Young when they tried to arrest him at 2009 Auseon Ave., near Bancroft Avenue. He then allegedly carjacked a vehicle and fled the area but was arrested on Saturday by San Diego police officers near the California-Mexico border.
Nicole Young said she's been sleeping in her husband's room at Highland Hospital.
"I talk to him every day when he wakes," she said, even though he can't speak yet.
She said that once he's able to communicate, "I will tell him I love him and want to bring him home to our kids."
The couple has an 8-year-old girl and a 5-year-old boy.
"They know that daddy was shot in the leg and he's sleeping so he can get better and come home," Young said. "That's all they need to know."
She added, "We have a long life ahead of us. He's going to pull through."
Fremont Police Chief Craig Steckler called community support for Officer Young "extraordinary" and especially praised the numerous people who have donated blood at blood banks throughout the Bay Area. Young has required extensive blood transfusion due to his numerous surgeries.
American Red Cross spokeswoman Sara O'Brien said additional blood drives to collect blood for Young and others in need will be held in the Bay Area in the coming days, including on Labor Day.
She said potential donors can call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to find out the times and locations of the blood drives.
Barrientos is scheduled to be arraigned in Alameda County Superior Court on Tuesday for attempted murder, carjacking and eight other felonies.
Police said that when Barrientos was arrested, he was in the passenger seat of a car driven by 23-year-old Gustavo Silva.
Silva was arraigned today on charges of being an accessory to attempted murder after the fact and transportation of marijuana.