Officer Jeff Koenig returned to work on February 19, after two years of recovery from a shooting during a routine traffic stop.
In the early hours of January 22, 2019, Saginaw Township Police Officer Jeff Koenig pulled over a Dodge Ram with its headlights off. What should have been a simple safety stop very nearly took Officer Koenig’s life.
The truck had been stolen hours earlier by Joshua Rosebush, who had cut his electronic tethers on January 3 to escape parole. “It was a simple traffic stop — tell him to turn his lights on and go home,” Koenig later testified. “I believe I said something; I don’t recall exactly what I said. He said, ‘Nighty night,’ and fired the shot into my face.”
After the shooting, Rosebush stole two more vehicles as he continued his flight. He was spotted driving east in a van by Shiawassee County Sheriff’s Detective Lt. Scott Shenk, whom he also attempted to fire on as he exited the vehicle. Shenk returned fire, hitting Rosebush in the face and shoulder.
Rosebush was taken to Sparrow Hospital, where Michigan State Police Detective Sgt. David Rivard recorded his confession. When asked whether Officer Koenig said anything as he approached him after the initial stop, Rosebush was recorded saying, “No, I didn’t give him time … I shot him point blank in the face … twice. I ran as fast as I could.”
In October 2019, Rosebush was convicted on 26 counts, including “assault with intent to murder.” Saginaw County Circuit Judge Andre R. Borrello sentenced him to 75 to 115 years, served with at least 12 concurrent terms, and 13 consecutive two-year stints. Rosebush is currently a resident of Carson City Correctional Facility. His earliest possible release date is 2096.
But long before Rosebush began his sentence, Koenig was walking the road to recovery. And though numerous surgeries were further complicated by the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Koenig has finally emerged victorious.
“He’s happy to be back and everyone was glad to see him and have him back,” Chief Donald F. Pussehl Jr. said. “He came back and made his rounds; there were lots of hugs and handshakes. Everyone is glad to get him back and have him back here working. He’s in great spirits.”
The precinct at large was encouraged to see Koenig walk back through the doors. “Morale is very high and officers are very happy to have him back,” Pussehl added. “They’re supportive of him and seeing how his road to recovery has gone well for him over the last two years.”
Editor’s note: An earlier headline of this article erroneously identified Koenig as a Mississippi police officer. It has been updated to reflect that he belongs to a Michigan department.