Family describes officer involved in Nashville school shooting as brave

Brother of Rex Engelbert discovered officer encountered shooter after video was released Tuesday.
WSMV's Marissa Sulek reports.
Published: Mar. 28, 2023 at 4:03 PM CDT
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WSMV) - As Metro Nashville Police released the body camera video of The Covenant School shooting, that’s when the family of 27-year-old MNPD officer Rex Engelbert found out their son was the first to shoot Audrey Hale.

Monday, Kevin Engelbert says he spoke with his brother, Rex, who said he responded to a school shooting, but wouldn’t tell him at what capacity. Kevin says it’s when he watched the body camera video Tuesday morning he discovered his brother was the one at the center of it all.

In that video it took almost three minutes from when Officer Engelbert got to the The Covenant School to when he shot Hale.

He was polite, determined, and quick, which his brother Kevin noticed.

“He kept his manners in the video when he was talking to the lady who was devastated,” says Kevin. “And just the fact that he was always trying to be front of the line.”

Officer Rex Engelbert is one of five kids raised in Chicago. He’s also a four year Metro Police veteran who moved to the city to be with his fiancé. It’s a job his brother says he doesn’t take for granted.

“If you ever talk to him and has a long week or an extra shift, he will cheekily say ‘I get to work overtime today,’” says Kevin.

He says Officer Rex Engelbert is fearless, something they get from their mother.

“Our mom always taught us to be brave and that was easily seen in his actions yesterday, and that department and that body camera footage,” Kevin points out.

And it’s that footage that proves Rex was the right person to be in the right place at the right time.

“Just chills and just very proud to see how brave he was heading toward the sound of gunfire and obviously just scared for his life and devastated at signs of the victims in the school,” says Kevin.

Officer Rex Engelbert’s family says they plan to see him this week.