2000 - 2009
Tributes For Police And Military K9
Some of these tributes
are for police canine officers that were killed in the line of duty and
some for officers that died while off duty. Also included are military
canine handlers that were killed during wars.
star on both sides of officer name indicates both officer and K9 were
killed in line of duty
Deputy Charles Douglas Brown Jr.
December 8, 2009 - Williamston, North Carolina - Age 38
Deputy Charles Douglas Brown, 38, was shot at 9:16
a.m. on December 8, 2009 while responding to a 911 call about a man
with a gun. A call was received from a lady saying that her brother,
Jerry Pace, was arguing with his father wanting to kill him with a
gun. When officers arrived they found Jerry Lee Pace Jr., 36,
at 1710 W. Main St. in Williamston, armed with a AR 15 assault rifle. Officers
ordered Pace to drop his weapon, then he opened fire wounding Deputy
Brown with one shot which struck him in the chest and traveled down
to his abdomen. Deputy Brown was wearing his vest at the time. Two police officer's then
returned fire and shot Pace numerous times killing him.
Deputy Brown was transported to Martin General Hospital where he
died shortly after. Deputy Brown was a member of the United States Police
Canine Association , Region 2. Brown, a 15-year veteran of law
enforcement, who previously worked with the Williamston Police
Department. Deputy Brown
served as a United
States Marine in Desert Storm, was on the Honor Guard and medic in
the Marine Corps and received
the Elegance Award while serving. He also was a sniper on the N.C.
Department of Corrections PERT Team and helped with Hurricane
Katrina disaster relief in New Orleans and in Thailand after the
tsunami. At Deputy Brown's funeral, Troopers carried him to his
final resting place. They were members of the Highway Patrol's
Caisson Unit. The Caisson Wagon dates back to the Civil War days. It
was an artillery piece, a wagon used to carry heavy loads such as a
cannon ammunition. One of the troopers participating in the service
was the only trooper walking her horse, which was used as a Capison
horse which is insignant of the last ride for the fallen officer. He
was not ridden and the boots were turned backwards in the stirrups
to signify his last ride looking back at his ride. It's an honor
once reserved for fallen generals. When a general would fall on the
battle field, his men would remove his boots and turn them backwards
in the stirrups and send that horse back to camp to signify and to
show that the general had fallen while serving in duty. As Brown's
casket was carried from the Senator Bob
Martin Agricultural Center, two Martin County deputies led
his K9 partner, H2, behind the casket. The processional to the
burial site was led by dozens of K-9 units. Approximately thirteen
hundred people attended his funeral.
Deputy Brown is survived by his wife, Cindy, and two teen age
daughters, Morgan and Carlie and his faithful K9 partner
"H2". A memorial fund has been set
up to help pay for their college education.
Memorial contributions may be sent to
Charlie's Angels College
Fund, c/o BB&T Bank, 902 Washington Street, Williamston, NC 27892.
Pace had a
couple of larceny convictions back in the 90's in Craven County and
served his time.
Jerry Pace Jr. had a conviction for
resisting an officer and trespassing in Martin County on 2/14/1993. Also
convictions for larceny and breaking and entering in 1990 when he
was nineteen years old.
Officer Richard "Ricky" Fred Opperud II
November 24, 2009 - Angleton,Texas - Age 47
K-9 Officer Rick Fred
Opperud was nationally known as a police dog trainer. Opperud, 47, died
on the morning of 11/24/09 of complications from an aneurysm that burst
while he was training drug dogs in Louisiana on Nov. 4 and rushed to
Shreveport hospital. Opperud was then flown to Methodist Hospital in
Houston, where he underwent surgery to repair the problem. He suffered
several strokes and never recovered. He was in a Hospice care center for
about two weeks. He was well known in the law enforcement community,
especially among other K-9 officers. Richard "Rick" Fred Opperud II
attended Danbury High School. He went to work for the Danbury Police
Department in January, 1989 and joined the Freeport Police Department in
November, 1989. He worked as a patrolman in Freeport until joining the
sheriff's office as a jailer in 1992. He was moved to the patrol
division later that year, and in 1996 was moved to the narcotics
division. Opperud became a K-9 handler in 1998 with his first dog, Kubo.
In 2000, Kubo was recognized as a police K-9 "Top Dog." Together, they
were certified in narcotics, patrol, tracking, land and water cadaver
recovery and explosive detection. Opperud was promoted to narcotics
investigator in 2002. He later was partnered with Joe, until that K-9's
retirement in 2009, when he began working with Erko. Opperud was a member of the
National Narcotic Detector Dog Association, North American Police Work
Dog Association, Texas Narcotics Officers Association, Brazoria County
Peace Officers Association, Brazoria County Sheriff Deputies Association
and a number of other law enforcement organizations. He
was a certified trainer for the National
Narcotic Detector Dog Association and served on its Board of
Directors. He and his K-9 partner were certified by the National
Narcotic Detector Dog Association in cadaver recovery and explosive
detection and in patrol tactics, narcotics detection and tracking. Deputy Opperud earned
numerous awards for his dedication to law enforcement and his excellent
canine training skills. He was selected as the Outstanding Peace Officer
of the Year in 2004 by the Brazoria County Peace Officers Association.
He received the Meritorious Achievement Awards in 2006 and 2009 from the
National Narcotic Detector Dog Association. Additionally he was honored
by Narcotics Dog Detector Associations in Lake Jackson, Nacogdoches and
Corpus Christi. Opperud leaves
behind his wife Pam and two
children, a son, Joshua ; and daughter, Amber Kay Opperud.
Brazoria County Sheriff's Office Honor
Guard presented American flags to Opperud's children, and the Brazoria
County Cavalry, presented two Texas' flags to the family.
Nearly 500 mourners attended
his service to honor the lawman extraordinaire.
SSGT. Rory Gavic
November 16, 2009 - Buffalo, Minnisota - Age 25
SSGT. Rory Gavic, 25,
had entered the U.S. Air
Force after graduating from Eagan High School in 2002. He excelled as a
military working dog (MWD) handler. The Army Commendation Medal and the
USAF Combat Action Medal were earned during the deployments to Iraq and
Pakistan with a dog named Allan. SSGT. Gavic earned 16 awards and
decorations including an Army Commendation Medal and a USAF Combat
Action Medal. In 2008 he was awarded Airman of the Year He had served
well during two deployments, one in Iraq from February 2007 to September
2007 and another in Pakistan from January 2009 to March 2009. On
Nov. 14, he called his mother, Linda Sawatzke, at home in Buffalo. She
was worried and asked him to talk to her. He hung up. She tried calling
back again and again, but there was no answer. Later,
Nov. 16, 2009 Rory
took his own life
He was stationed
at Hill Air Force Base in Layton, Utah.
Utah officials called Sawatzke to tell her they were searching for Gavic,
who was missing from the base. His truck was found in Antelope Island
body was found the next day. He had shot himself. Left behind, his
heartbroken mother. The program for the memorial service included a
quote from Sawatzke. "Gavic, I love you more with every beat of my
heart. I miss you so much my son and you have only been gone for a short
while. My life and my heart have a missing piece that will not fill
until I see you again."
four-year anniversary of Gavic's death they made a check on her at her
home because she was having a hard time coping with her son's suicide
and was not acting like herself.
Sawatzke said she
didn't mean to be rude, but she worked last night and worked later that
day and asked her company if they would mind going home? The company
said they would stay with her and she could sleep while the company
would watch TV. No, Sawatzke said. I'll feel like I have to entertain
you. The next day, on Nov. 16, four years later on the same date and
month, Sawatzke had shot herself in the heart,
the same as Gavic. She'd even used the same 9mm handgun. Her sister Rita
had found her and tried to do CPR, but it was too late to save her.
Sawatzke apparently had been planning her death for a long time. She'd
recovered Gavic's belongings, including his personal weapon, from the
sheriff's office in Utah. The papers Larsen had seen on the table were
her own obituary and instructions for her funeral. Sawatzke and Gavic
are buried side by side
at St. Francis Cemetary
on a hill overlooking
Spc. Brandon K. Steffey
October 25, 2009 - Laghman Province, Afghanistan - Age 23
Brandon K. Steffey of Sault
Ste. Marie, Michigan and his K9 Maci, died in Laghman province, Afghanistan, while on
active duty supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Spc. Steffey, age 23,
died October 25, 2009, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his
vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the
178th Military Police Detachment, 89th Military Police Brigade, 111
Corps, Fort Hood, Texas. Spc. Steffey was serving his second tour of
duty, having first served in Iraq. He became a dog handler during his
tour in Afghanistan. Steffey was a canine tracker handler for Forward
Operating Base Fenty Kennel in the Laghman Province of Afghanistan. His
dog Maci was trained to find militants who build, place and detonate
IEDs. His wife, Andrea, and 18 month-old daughter Abigail survive him.
Steffey’s decorations and awards include the Purple Heart, Bronze
Star, Army Commendation Medal,
Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan
Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal- Campaign Star, and Global War on
Terrorism Service. Funeral services were held November 4, 2009 with full
Officer Gerald "Jerry" Wayne Potts Jr.
October 24, 2009 - Centreville, Maryland - Age 44
Officer Gerald Wayne Potts Jr. Died on October 24, 2009 surrounded
by his family and friends at his home in Centreville, Maryland. He served
in the U.S. Air Force in Maryland.
After he was honorably discharged he resided in Laurel, Md.,
He started his career in law enforcement working for the U.S.
Capitol Police for one year and later joined the Greenbelt Police
Department, working as a K9 handler, until his retirement in April
of 2009 following 19 years of service. He leaves behind his wife
Kim, a son Gerald W. Potts III and a daughter Megan Potts and his K9
Corporal Mike Roberts
August 19, 2009 - Tampa, Florida - Age 38
Corporal Mike Roberts
was shot and killed in the line of duty at 9:58 p.m. on August 19, 2009.
Cpl. Roberts stopped a suspicious person pushing a shopping cart full
of items at Nebraska Avenue and Arctic Street in Florida. When Officer
Roberts stopped Humberto Delgado, 34, of 324 W Country Club Dr. in
Oldsmar, he ran from him and Officer Roberts then caught him and tried
to use his Taser, They began fighting again on the west side of
Nebraska Avenue, when police say Delgado pulled out a gun and started
beating Roberts with it. Then, he fired one shot with the 45 caliber.
wearing a bulletproof vest, but the bullet slipped through
an area not covered by his bulletproof
vest and went into the
right side of his chest.
The Tampa Police Departments
requires all of its officers wear bullet proof vests while they're on
duty. Police dispatch tried
unsuccessfully to call Roberts, and five minutes later, Sergeant Paul
Mumford was the first officer to arrived at the scene. He called to the suspect, who then ran to
a shopping cart and pulled a AR-15 assault rifle and pointed it at Sgt.
Mumford who was tending to officer Roberts and had to take cover behind
a dumpster. Deldado ran from the area running through a park telling
people not to tell anyone.
Vincent Gericitano saw Roberts on the ground with severe difficulty
breathing and called for an ambulance, saying an officer was down.
Officer Gericitano couldn't find Roberts' pulse and was unresponsive to
sound or touch. Another officer, Perry Anderson, arrived and cut
Roberts' shirt and removed Roberts' bulletproof vest and started chest
Otis Calhoun was also at the scene helping out with Cpl. Roberts.
Officer Sandra Learned arrived at the shooting scene with
a police dog to help track the suspect. K9 Koda, led Learned toward a
storage room at 812 E. Yukon St. and began sniffing at a wood pile.
Learned saw Delgado in the pile. Koda couldn't get to him, and Delgado
yelled, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry," holding his hands up between the wood at
10:50 p.m. Officers tried controlling Delgado, but he struggled. One
officer tried to get Delgado to put up his hands, repeatedly using
"hammer fist punches to the left side of his face." Another officer
reported hearing Delgado say, "I'm a police officer. I'm a police
officer. I'm sorry. I'm sorry." Officers said they searched Delgado and
found an automatic pistol, a revolver and a loaded pistol magazine in
He had been armed with two 9mm Glocks, a .22 caliber
pistol and an AR-15 assault rifle in his possession. Officer
Vincent Gericitano rode with Cpl. Roberts
in the ambulance when he was being rushed to Tampa General Hospital where he was pronounced dead at
surveillance video showing the whole shooting incident of Officer
Roberts was caught on camera at Simo Stone, a granite and marble
distributor at. 8625 N. Nebraska Ave owned by
Moe Fariad, the store owner.
Delgado had been a
homeless father, a former cop, and an Army veteran. Delgado's Uncle had
thrown him out of his home 2 weeks earlier. Delgado had two pit bulls in
his yard and wore his hair in dreads which he didn't approve of. Humberto Delgado was a police officer in the U.S. Virgin Islands and has
three kids. Delgado later joined the U.S. Army and lived in North
Carolina. A receipt was found for guns from a pawn shop in Fayetteville,
N.C., near Fort Bragg.
Delgado was a former private first class for the Army, joining in August
2004 and serving until December 2005. Delgado was a petroleum supply
specialist, fueling vehicles or aircraft. He earned the National Defense
Service Medal, given to soldiers who serve honorably during a time of
Delgado had an encounter with a law enforcement
officer just three days before the shooting according to records
released. A Pinellas sheriff's deputy was called to Veterans Memorial
Park in Oldsmar to investigate a complaint of a transient who appeared
to be living in the park. Deputy Russell Klar wrote in his report that
he found Delgado sleeping in a picnic pavilion in the park's northeast
corner around 1 a.m. The deputy noted that he had seen Delgado earlier
walking along Lafayette Boulevard carrying a large backpack in desert
camouflage. Delgado told the deputy he was a disabled veteran in dire
straits, the report said. He had stopped talking to his family in
Oldsmar. He also needed a place to live. He told the deputy he was
trying to obtain government assistance to help him pay for some kind of
housing. Delgado also said he had a storage locker nearby. The deputy
said he warned Delgado that it would be the last morning he could spend
in the park. He could not stay in any city park, the deputy told him,
and warned Delgado that he could be issued a trespass warning or be
cited if he continued to stay there. Delgado said he understood,
according to the deputy's report. The encounter ended without incident.
Roberts had been an officer for 11 years with the Tampa Police
Department, five of which he spent as a
K-9 officer with his partner, K9 Thor, and K9 Roger On July 12, 2009, Roberts was promoted to
corporal and assigned to patrol District 2, the area where he was
killed. Cpl Mike Roberts was a decorated officer who won the
department's life saving award in 2005 and had received dozens of
letters of appreciation from citizens, supervisors and other law
Roberts received 33
commendations and awards for his actions over the years. He also served with the U.S. Air Force and U.S.
Army and fought in the Persian Gulf War with the 810th Military Police
in the Bosnia Operation Joint Guard and received many Unit Service
Medals and also received a Presidential Citation and Ribbon. Corporal Mike Robert's
service began with a
riderless horse procession at the church. The
funeral service included
salute, a missing man formation flyover and the playing of taps and
private graveside ceremony.
Approximately four thousand people attended the service along with about
one hundred K9 teams.
K9 Koda who
captured Corporal Mike Roberts killer retired in 2012 and died on
Roberts is survived by his wife Cynthia and 3-year-old son Adam.
funds have been set up for donations to the family of Cpl. Mike Roberts.
Checks may be made out to the Tampa Police Memorial Fund and mailed to
411 N Franklin St., Tampa, FL 33602. In the memo section, write "Cpl.
Mike Roberts Memorial Fund." In addition, account No. 538412 has been
set up with Tampa Bay Federal Credit Union. Checks should be payable to
Cynthia Roberts or the Tampa Police Memorial Fund. 411 N. Franklin St.
Tampa, Fl 33602 Donations can be made at any credit union in the Tampa
Humberto Delgado, Jr., was
arrested on August 20, 2009 at 10:25 p.m. He was charged at 4:59 a.m. with
premeditated murder in the first degree
for the murder of Cpl. Roberts, aggravated assault on a law enforcement
officer, carrying a concealed handgun, and depriving officer of means of
protection. He was taken to the
Hillsborough County Jail.
On August 21, 2009
Humberto Delgado made his first court appearance and
Judge Heinrich ruled that
Delgado be held without bond for the duration of his cases.
On September 3, 2009 Humberto Delgado Jr. was indicted on first degree
murder and other charges. He is scheduled to arraigned on the charges
September 10, 2009 and prosecutors will have
45 days from that point to determine whether they will seek the death
penalty for Delgado. On December 21, 2009
dash cam video tapes were
released to the media and the public but only can be viewed at the clerk
of the circuit court's office; no copies are allowed. Circuit Judge
Anthony K. Black said that will allow the public to access to the
evidence but spare Roberts' family from being confronted by repeated
replays of the images. Delgado has pleaded not guilty and is facing the
death penalty. On 10/1/10 Humberto Delgado and his public defender
lawyer, Christopher Watson, had a preliminary hearing and Judge Emmett
Battles wanted to know when a trial date could be set. Delgado's lawyer
requested that he needed more time to prepare for the trial and Judge
Battles set another status hearing for 12/10/10. On October 31, 2011
jury selection began and his trial started on November 3, 2011. During
the beginning of the trial, testimony by Richard Farmer, a convicted
felon seven times, and convicted of three misdemeanors was driving by
that night and witnessed Officer Mike Roberts getting shot. Testimony
was also heard about Officer Roberts talking to Humberto Delgato Jr. and
Officer Roberts shooting his stun gun at Delgato. One of the prongs got
stuck in Humberto Delgato’s dreadlocks and the other was in his
shoulder. Delgato was trying to pull the prong out of his shoulder and
then a struggle started between Officer Roberts and Degato. Humberto
Delgato Jr. was beating Officer Roberts while he was on the ground and
then shot him once. On
Nov. 15, 2012 the jury consisting of nine men and three women
deliberated for about six hours and came back with a verdict at 9:00
p.m. They found Humberto Delgado Jr. guilty of first-degree murder of
Cpl. Mike Roberts. The jury found Humberto Delgato Jr. guilty on all
four counts: first degree murder, aggravated assault on a law
enforcement officer, carrying a concealed firearm and depriving an
officer means of communication . On 11/17/11 the jury met in private for
three hours from about 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. and voted 8-4 before
returning to the courtroom recommending the death penalty. On 2/10/12
Circuit Judge Emmett Lamar Battles
followed the jury's recommendation and gave Humberto Delgato the death
Officer Jason William Bugh
May 1,2009 - Van Wert, Ohio - Age 37
Officer Jason William Bugh. 37, died at 10:30 a.m. on
May 1, 2009 while off duty jogging near his home in Van Wert, Ohio from
an apparent heart attack. Officer Jason Bugh was a twelve-year veteran
of the Lima, Ohio Police Department serving as a K-9 Handler for last
five years. Officer Bugh received a Bravery Award, Lifesaving Award, and
Distinguished Achievement Award while he was with the Lima Police
Department. He was a veteran of the United
States Army and Marines. Jason leaves behind a wife, Niki, his three
children, two daughters and one son, Hunter Alexis Bugh, Ashlyn Nicole
Bugh, Preston James Bugh, along with his K-9 partner, Aron. Preceded in
death by son Colton William Bugh. Jason was laid to rest with full
police honors. A Jason Bugh K-9 Memorial Fund has been established in
his honor. Donations can be sent to: Lima Police Department, C/O Jason
Bugh K-9 Memorial Fund, Attention: Ptl. John H. Dunham Jr., 117 E.
Market Street, Lima, Ohio 45801 or Christian Deer Hunters
Association (Ohio Chapter), P.O. Box 432, Silver Lake, Minn. 55381.
Staff Sgt. Raphael Anton Futrell
March 25, 2009 - Baghdad, Iraq - Age 26
Staff Sgt. Raphael A.
Futrell, 26, of Anderson, South Carolina died in Bagdad, Iraq on
3/25/09. Futrell was a
for his MP unit, which deployed in
November to Iraq from Fort Shafter, Hawaii.
He was a dual
canine operator - bomb-sniffing dogs and attack dogs. He died of injuries received
in a noncombat-related incident, which is under investigation by the
U.S. Department of Defense. Futrell was assigned to the 13th Military
Police Detachment, 728th Military Police Battalion, 8th Military Police
Brigade, 8th Theater Sustainment Command, Fort Shafter. Raphael enlisted
on July 17, 2001, right after graduating from high school. Futrell was
stationed in Hawaii twice. The first time was in 2001 at Schofield
Barracks. He was deployed to Afghanistan in April 2004 for a year,
returned to Fort Belvoir, Va., and came back to Hawaii last November.
Awards and decorations include the
Army Commendation Medal, six Army
Achievement Medals, two Army Good Conduct Medals,
National Defense Service Medal,
Global War on Terrorism Service
Afghanistan Campaign Medal w/Campaign Star,
Iraq Campaign Medal w/Campaign Star,
Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Development Ribbon w/numeral 2,
Army Service Ribbon, two Overseas Service Ribbons,
Air Assault Badge and Driver
On April,4, 2009 Sgt. Futrell's funeral service was held at the Civic
Center in Anderson, South Carolina where approximately two hundred
people attended his service. He was given full military honors at his
burial at New Holly Light Missionary Baptist Church cemetery in
Pendleton. Sgt. Futrell is survived by his
Chance Jerome Futrell, with his former wife Angela,
and K9 Jofa.
Sgt. Daniel Sakai
March 21, 2009 - Oakland, California - Age 35
Daniel Sakai,35, was shot and killed along with three of his fellow
Oakland officers in Oakland California on 3/21/09. The following events
unfolded when at approximately 1:08 pm, Sergeant Dunakin,40, and Officer
Hege, 41, were patrolling on motorcycle and pulled over a
Burgundy Buick four-door
sedan at 74th Avenue and
Mixon had just purchased the vehicle. The officers approach the vehicle,
ask for license and registration, turn around with the paperwork and
start running the information through dispatch on the car
at the traffic stop. During the stop, the driver,
Lovelle Mixon,26, then exits his vehicle with a handgun and
open fires on both. While both officers are laying on the ground
bleeding, Lovelle walks up to the both of them and stands over them
shooting them execution style, killing the officers. Both officers
never had a chance to
draw their weapons and react. Lovelle then flees on
foot. Citizens who witnessed the
incident called 911 and started CPR on both officers. At 1:16 p.m.
Oakland police receive a 911 call saying two of their officers were
shot. Both officers are rushed to the hospital where Officer Dunakin
dies from his wounds and Officer Hege clings to life. Approximately 200
officers begin a manhunt and set up a perimeter.
East Bay Regional Parks
Police, California Highway Patrol and
Alameda County Sheriff's Department
are called in to help search the area along with an Oakland Police
helicopter. At approximately 1:55
pm, the Oakland Police Department received an anonymous tip that the
suspect was barricaded inside an apartment building on 74th Avenue.
Officers then surround the 10-unit apartment building. There are
concerns that innocent civilians could be the next victims of Lovelle’s
rampage. Sharpshooters are set up around the building and an hour is
taken to set up a tactic plan to enter the building. Officers first
attempted to negotiate with the suspect, but when that failed a SWAT
entry team was sent in at approximately 3:00 p.m. to apprehend him.
A SWAT team entered
the front doors of the building, forceing the door open and throwing in
a flashbang. The officers rush into the dark and smoky filled room and
are immediately met with heavy gun fire from the suspect using a
AK 47 military assault rifle, killing
Sergeants Ervin Romans and Daniel Sakai and wounding a third officer at
the time. At least a dozen bullets ripped through walls and closets in
the building. The
first officer to be struck by a bullet was Sgt. Ervin Romans, 43, who is
dragged out bleeding heavily by fellow officers and rushed to Highland
Hospital. Lovelle was waiting in a closet waiting for the next officer.
When Officer Sakai entered he received wounds to his neck and head. Officers
then pinpoint where the shots are coming from and
returned fire, killing the suspect, Lovelle Mixon. Officer Sakai is then
taken out of the building with neck and head wounds and also rushed to
Highland Hospital. Sgt. Pat Gonzales also was struck by a bullet in the
shoulder during the raid and drove himself to the hospital and was
treated and released. Officer Hege was declared brain dead the next day.
Sergeant Sakai had served with
the Oakland Police Department for nine years.
Sakai graduated from the College of
Natural Resources in 1996 with a degree in forestry and natural
resources and also worked as a community service officer (CSO) with the
UC Berkeley Police Department from 1992 to 1997. The funeral service for
Sgt. Sakai, Sgt, Ervin Roman, Sgt. Dunakin and Officer Hege was held at
Oracle Arena in Oakland and was
attended by over 20,000 people just in the Arena.
When Sgt. Sakai casket had
been placed in a row with the others, Sakai's German shepherd K9
partner, "Doc", was brought in on a leash. The dog stood at the casket
and barked several times before being led away.
A bugler sounded
taps, and police bagpipers played
Amazing Grace. Outside the arena, officers stood at attention as
their slain colleagues received a twenty-one-gun salute from military
cannons. Each officer was honored with a group of five law enforcement
helicopters flown overhead, with one peeling off in a "missing man"
formation. Sgt. Sakai lived in Castro Valley with
his family and is survived by his wife, Jennifer, a U C Berkeley police
officer, their 3-year-old daughter Jojiye, and his K9 partner "Doc".
Checks may be directed
to the "Sakai Family Trust," c/o Oakland Police Officers Association,
Attn: Rennee Hassna, 555 5th St., Oakland, CA 94607. Wire transfers may
be directed to Merrill Lynch Accounts, "Sakai Family Trust," account
later determined that Lovelle
Mixon had an extensive violent
criminal history and was released in October of 2007 and on parole for
assault with a deadly weapon
after serving five years of a
six-year sentence for assault with a firearm. In February, Mixon was
placed on a parole hold as a possible suspect in a homicide in Alameda
County, according to undersecretary of operations for the state
Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. Mixon was detained on
various parole violations and sent back to prison for nine months. On
February 18, 24, 26, 2009, Mixon's parole officer could not find him.
On February 27 Mixon's parole
officer issued a warrant for Mixon's arrest. On March 6, 2009,
The Fugitive Apprehension
Team and members of the Oakland Police Department visit three Oakland
addresses, including Mixon's mother's home, his address of record. The
following week, they distribute a bulletin to the Oakland Police
Department. The case is also referred to the U.S. Marshals Service to
check on reports that Mixon might have been in the Auburn, Wash., area.
Unfortunately they are unable to locate him. On March 2, Mixon kills
Oakland police officers.
Sgt. Santos A. Cardona
February 28, 2009 - Uruzgan Provence, Afghanistan - Age 34
A. Cardona, 34, and his K9 Zoomie, a bomb dog, were killed in
Uruzgan Provence, Afghanistan, on 2/28/10 while doing a morning
patrol. Cardona was sitting in the back of the Humvee when it came
under fire. Trying to evade the ambush, the vehicle rolled over
several bombs and was catapulted by the blast, flipping over and
landing on Santos and his K9 killing them instantly. He had joined
the Army at 17 in 1993, needing his fathers signature to do so and
envisioned a military career. Sgt. Cardona had been involved in the
abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib, and was determined to continue
fighting in America's overseas battles to erase the stain on his
assault conviction. Cardona and his Belgian Malinois, Duco, were
shown in photographs of detainee abuse that surfaced publicity in
2004. The most notable image showed K9 Duco growling at a cowering
On June 2, 2006
a military jury sentenced Cardona to 90 days hard labor and a
reduction in rank for allowing his Belgian shepherd to bark within
inches of an Iraqi detainee's face at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
Army Sgt. Santos A. Cardona was the 11th soldier convicted of crimes
stemming from the abuse of inmates at the prison in late 2003 and
early 2004. He was found guilty of dereliction of duty and
aggravated assault for allowing his dog to bark in the face of a
kneeling detainee at the request of another soldier who was not an
interrogator. The military jury acquitted him of other charges,
including unlawfully having his dog bite a detainee and conspiring
with another dog handler to frighten prisoners as a game. Cardona
was not confined during his sentence, but returned to Fort Bragg,
North Carolina. Cardona's rank was reduced to specialist and the
court ordered him to forfeit $600 a month in pay for 12 months.
Prior to that , Cardona served as a military police
officer, and had been a dog handler since 1993. He had been in
Haiti, Bosnia & Iraq. Staying in the Army did not mean the legacy of
Abu Ghraib would disappear. After his blocked attempt to return to
Iraq in 2006, he worked at the Army's dog kennels at Fort Brag, N.C.
Demoted as part of his sentence and finding he was unable to sign up
for the five more years it would have taken to earn full military
retirement pension, Cardona was honorably discharged on September
29, 2007. Cardona then became a contractor with American Canine, a
Florida based contracting company. He met Ashby, also a military
police soldier, while the two were stationed in Germany in the late
1990's and Keelyn was born in 1999. He leaves behind Ashby and his
9-year-old daughter, Keelyn Cardona and his retired other K9 Duco.
Superintendant Jackie Lugasi
February 20, 2009 - Morsha, Israel - Age 48
Superintendant Jackie Lugasi, 48, was killed February 20, 2009 in a
horrific car accident when he came to help his son change a flat tire on
the side of a highway. While attending to the car on the shoulder of
Highway 5 at the Morsha Junction, Moshe Cohen, 45, a truck driver
strayed from his lane and slammed into Superintendant Lugasi's car,
trapping the officer between the two vehicles. Moshe Cohen was charged
with manslaughter, negligence, and drunk driving. Officer Lugasi served
in the Israel Police for 23 years as a canine instructor, first in the
Israel Police Training School and then in the Northern District's Canine
Unit. For the past ten years he was the chief canine officer in the
Operations Department of the Israel Police. He was considered the top
Israeli specialist in his field and was globally renowned in the field
of dog breeding and training for security purposes. Superintendant
Lugasi left behind a wife and four children.
A breathalyzer test
taken following the accident revealed that Cohen's blood alcohol level
was 335 micrograms, higher than the legal limit of 240.
Moshe Cohen has 25 criminal convictions, 22 traffic violations and
weapon and drug offenses, the most recent in 2004.
friends stated they shared two bottles of vodka with him shortly before
the accident and tried to persuade him not to drive.
Cohen was charged with manslaughter, negligence, and drunk driving.
On June 11, 2009
Moshe Cohen was convicted
after reaching a plea deal in which he admitted to manslaughter and
driving while intoxicated and was sentenced to four and a half years in
Cohen was also given a
one-year suspended sentence and his driver's license was revoked for 20
Cpl. Christopher Kent Paschal
January 4, 2009 - Chilhowie, Virginia - Age 37
Cpl. Christopher Kent
Paschal, age 37, was involved in an off duty motor vehicle accident at
7:45 a.m. on January 2, 2009 and succumbed to his injuries at the
Bristol Regional Medical Center on Jan. 4, 2009, at approximately 4:30
p.m. after sustaining critical head injuries in an accident on icy
northbound Interstate 81. He was off duty that morning and traveling
with his wife, Kasey, and daughter, Keyleigh, when he saw an accident,
one of more than 100 in three counties in a short time caused by ice and
snow. As he telephoned central dispatch to report that accident when his
vehicle lost traction on the ice. The 2001 Mitsubishi SUV "ran off the
road to the right, overturned twice and came to rest on its wheels." He
was on the phone with the dispatcher, saying there was an accident, and
all of a sudden he advised her he was wrecking. Then he lost contact. Paschal's wife and daughter escaped injury. Paschal was taken to Smyth
County Community Hospital and transferred by ambulance to Bristol
Regional Medical Center. Weather conditions kept medical evacuation
helicopters grounded and Med-Flight was unable to be sent to the
accident. Paschal was with the Smyth County Sheriff's Office
for eight years and before that served with Saltville Police
Department. In 2007 Paschal and his K-9 Ben graduated from the 13-week
Virginia State Police/Southwest Law
Enforcement Academy's Narcotics & Dog Handling School.
Paschal is survived by his wife Kasey, daughter Keyleigh
and son Tanner along with his K9 partner "Ben". A relief fund has been set up at the Bank of Chilhowie
for the Paschal family. Checks should be payable to the Deputy Chris
Paschal Relief Fund, Bank of Chilhowie, PO Box 1560, Chilhowie, VA
Sgt. Marc Charles Wilbur
December 25, 2008 – Avon Park, Florida - Age 43
Sgt. Marc Wilbur, 43, of
Avon Park Police Department died approximately 8:30 a.m. Christmas
morning at the Winn Dixie shopping plaza parking lot in his patrol
car with a trainee when he "fell unconscious,"
after he began his shift at
6:00 a.m. He was accompanied by a police officer trainee who
notified emergency dispatch that he collapsed. EMS responded
and attempted to revive him with cardiopulmonary resuscitation but
He was transported by Highlands County
Emergency Medical Services to Florida Hospital Heartland Division,
where he was pronounced dead at 9:00 a.m.
of an apparent heart
attack. Sgt. Wilbur is the first
Avon Park Police officer to die while on duty. Sgt. Wilbur was a
state certified K-9 instructor holding certification courses for the
Highlands County Sheriff's Office, Polk County and the city of North
Port K-9 teams. In 2006 Wilbur and his 7-year-old partner "Ivan" were the
cream of the crop after beating out fifty other K9 teams from across
the country in the annual Bomb and Narcotics Detection Seminar held
in Daytona in 2006 where canine teams from as far away as Bahamas
competed. In 2004 Sgt. Wilbur and Ivan took second
place in the National Drug Detection Seminar put on by the Southern
Hills Kennels, Inc, in Daytona. Prior to handling Ivan, Sgt. Wilbur
handled K9 partner "Sando", who had numerous arrests to his credit.
Sgt Wilbur served as a law enforcement officer for Avon Park Police
Department for twelve years. Before that he served with Falmouth
Police Department in Massachusetts and as a deputy sheriff with the
Seminole County Sheriff's Office and police officer for Frostproof
Police Department in Florida. His career spanned a total of nearly
20 years. A horse-and-buggy procession, black rider less horse,
approximately 12 K-9 teams and honor guards made up the service ith
approximately five hundred people who attended the servive watch two
helicopters doing a fly over at the end. Wilbur is survived by his seven year old son Adam Scott
Donations can be made to his son at any Bank of America location
under the account name, Adam Scott Wilbur Trust, and the account
number is 229008724703.
Deputy Sheriff Brian DeWayne Denning
December 8, 2008 – Gallatin, Tennessee - Age 36
Deputy Sheriff Brian
Denning, 36, was killed in a automobile accident on December 8, 2008,
just four days after his birthday, on Long Hollow Pike in Gallatin,
Tennessee. He was on duty returning from a call at approximately 12:51
a.m. His patrol car, a Chevrolet Tahoe left the roadway and struck a
tree and burst into flames. Many passersby attempted to rescue him from
the vehicle but were unable due to the intense flames. Deputy Denning
had served with the Sumner County Sheriff's Department agency for 12
years and was assigned to the 18th Judicial District Drug Task Force. He
also served in the U.S. Army Air Force. He is survived by his wife
Barbara Jane (Eversole) Denning and two step daughters, Jessica and
Whitney Downs, and his K9 partner "Eli". Memorial contributions may be
made to: The Children's Tree House at Long Hollow Baptist Church, 3031
Long Hollow Pike, Hendersonville, TN 37075.
Officer Keith Rendueles
November 30, 2008 - Big Pine Key, Florida - Age 28
Officer Keith Rendueles, 28,
of Big Pine Key, committed suicide on 11/30/08 by shooting himself at
his home. Rendueles' roommate heard a gunshot at 3:17 a.m., finding
Rendueles dead. Officer Rendueles had been a Key West police officer for
eight years and had been a member of the K-9 Narcotics Unit with his
canine partner Daxo since 2004. Rendueles' personnel file was full of letters from
people in the community commending the job he did which acknowledged him
for his professionalism and quick response. Why Rendueles killed himself
is unknown. Rendueles was not married. Contributions may be made in
Keith' s memory to the Key West Police Department K-9 Fund, 1604 N.
Roosevelt Blvd., Key West, FL 33040.
Sgt. Darrell D. Johnson
October 24, 2008 - South Fulton, Georgia - Age 42
Sgt. Darrell Johnson, 42, was killed while off
duty on 10/24/08 in a head on car crash at 12:20 a.m. in Douglas County, Georgia.
Police received a 911 call from a driver who saw a Ford Focus "all over
the road." who suspected a drunken
That motorist stayed behind the Focus and directed a
deputy to its location and when the deputy tried to stop the Focus, it
Douglas County Sheriff Deputies
chased the Focus for about seven miles which was driven by
Brent Jacobs, 21, of Douglasville. Jacobs crossed the center line on Campbellton Road in South Fulton and
crashed head-on into Sgt. Darrell Johnson. Both were killed upon impact. Johnson who lived in College
Park and was driving his own car, a white Ford Crown Victoria, was on
his way home for a couple of hours sleep before he went back to work at
the Atlanta Police Department after working his second job doing
security for a Brookhaven neighborhood. Sgt. Johnson had been with
the Atlanta Police Department for 18 years. He worked red dog (tactical
unit), was a dog handler and a hostage negotiator and also worked in
Sgt. Johnson is survived by his wife
Keisha and his children, Darrel Junior, Derrick, Isaiah and Anecia.
Officer Bradley Alan Moody
October 7, 2008 - Richmond, California - Age 29
Officer Bradley Moody, 29, was headed
north on a rain-slicked Richmond road on Marina Bay Parkway at 8:05
a.m. on 10/4/08. Officer Moody was in route to an officer's call for
more help on a report of an assault near the corner of 18th Street
and Gaynor Avenue which was about two miles away from the police
station. Officer Moody lost control of his cruiser at a bend in the
road near railroad tracks and between Regatta Boulevard and Jetty
Drive. There were some skid marks prior to the cruiser slamming
broadside into the light pole on the passenger side which was in a
raised center island. The light pole went half way through the
vehicle causing massive head injuries to Moody. The cruiser jumped
the curb before it wrapped around the pole, hitting it sideways. An
off-duty firefighter came upon the wreck on Marina Way South,
between Meeker Avenue and Regatta, and called for help. Richmond
police officers, firefighters and several Pacific Gas and Electric
Co. employees kept Moody alive until he could be transported to John
Muir Medical Center. Moody was flown by helicopter to John Muir
Medical Center in Walnut Creek where doctors said he had suffered a
catastrophic brain injury and they would not be able to save him. He
was declared brain dead right after the accident and was kept on
life support to allow family members and co-workers to say good bye.
Moody had chosen to be an organ donor and was also kept on life
support for an organ donation.
It was the first rain of the season which causes the roads to be
very slick from petroleum-based products.
The agency will do a mechanical
inspection of the vehicle to check for malfunctions prior to the
crash. The officer worked with a Belgian Malinois police dog, K9
Rico, who was injured in the crash but survive. Just before Moody
entered his cruiser to assist another officer that morning before
the crash, Moody received a commendation for chasing down and
arresting two suspects carrying concealed weapons just a week apart
in August. One suspect had a sawed-off shotgun hidden in the sleeve
of his sweatshirt, and the other had been armed with semiautomatic
handgun. Moody was taken off life support on 10/7/08 and died at
2:45 a.m., fifty six hours after the accident. Moody's organs were
donated to a man at
the University of
California, San Francisco Medical Center
"who had 24 hours to live. Officer
Moody's memorial service was held on 10/14/08 at the
Sleep Train Pavilion
in Concord, California,
where over two thousand attended the service along with more than
one hundred canine officers with their canines. Moody's K-9 partner
Rico, now the family's pet, was on the stage of the Sleep
attending the service. The service ended with a 21 - gun salute and
the playing of taps.
graduated in 2000 from the police academy at Los Medanos College in
Pittsburg, where he was named top athlete, top marksman and overall
No. 1 in his class. Moody was posthumously awarded the
department's Distinguished Service Award.
who is survived by his wife, Susan, a former Richmond police
dispatcher, and their two young daughters, Madison age 3 and Emma age 1 years old.
Officer Moody was a veteran of the Richmond police force for seven
and a half years and a member of the SWAT team assigned to the K9
A memorial fund has been established for Moody's family at the
Mechanics Bank. Donations can be made to "The Memorial Fund for
Officer Brad Moody" and mailed to
Mechanics Bank, 3170 Hilltop Mall Road, Richmond, CA 94806.
Officer Kristine Fairbanks
September 20, 2008 - Olympic National Forest, Washington - Age
Kristine Fairbanks is the first female canine officer shot and killed in
the line of duty in the United States. Officer
Kristine Fairbanks, 51, a certified canine officer with 15 years in the
federal agency was found shot to death on 9/20/08 after reporting a
suspicious van at the Dungeness Forks campground east of Sequim at
2:22 p.m. while on duty. Fairbanks was working on Forest Road 2880 when
she radioed the State Patrol to ask for information on the vehicle about
five miles inside the Olympic National Forest.
Fairbanks was seeking
information about 36-year-old Shawn Matthew Roe who she identified was driving a van
with no plates
and also one of the vehicle
identification numbers had been scratched off,
later another vehicle identification number, which is hidden on every
vehicle, was found on the van by a specialist from the State Patrol. When a dispatcher radioed
back eight minutes later, there was no response. When troopers arrived at
the scene at 3:10 p.m. they found
Fairbanks dead of a .22 caliber gunshot wound to the side of her head, her
shepherd police dog
"Radar" unharmed in her
vehicle, and the van was nowhere in sight.
Fairbanks maybe could have used a
trigger-device that K9 officers use to remotely open their car doors to
let their dog partners out, if it had been functioning. Fairbanks had
one, but knew that the device didn't work, and was not repaired since
she was getting a new patrol vehicle within a few weeks, and the Forest
Service had not replaced it. If it had been working it was said it
wouldn’t have made a difference based on the F.B.I. report that Officer
Fairbanks had no time to defend herself and there was no evidence of a
The only witness told
investigators they believed the man was driving an older model Dodge van
that was red, gray or brown in color and did not have license plates.
Authorities were asking for the public's help in locating the van and to
call 911 but keep their distance if they see it.
At 5:45 p.m.,
about four hours after the
shooting, a tipster called who spotted the van abandoned off of
Youngquist Road in a heavily wooded area
near where Fairbanks was shot. County
and state law enforcement officers had mounted a search for Roe using
dogs and a State Patrol aircraft equipped with infrared detection, but
hadn't been able to trace him.
At 9:30 p.m., after authorities handed out fliers in the area
identifying Roe as a suspect, he was spotted by a security officer
entering a gas station
and convenience store,
the Longhouse Market & Deli on the Jamestown S'Klallam Tribal
reservation and called 911.
The location is near the Seven Cedars
Casino on U.S. Highway 101 east of Sequim. Two Clallam
County sheriff's deputies who were involved in the search encountered
Shawn Roe outside the deli
at 9:33 p.m. after
leaving the market carrying a
bottle of Canadian whiskey and two Pepsis and
was told to raise his
hands, but he refused.
Roe took a gun out and
one shot at the deputies with a gun he had taken from Officer
Fairbanks, a 9mm gun.
Clallam County sheriff's deputies returned fire with nine shots.
Matthew Murphy, who has 14 years on the force, fired five rounds from an
AR-15 .223-caliber assault rifle. Deputy Andrew Wagner, with 1 1/2 years on
the Clallam County force, fired four rounds from his .40-caliber pistol.
Roe was shot and died at the
scene, but neither deputy was injured.
deputies were placed on routine administrative leave. Police said Murphy fired the fatal
Deputies found two more guns on
Shawn Roe was carrying three guns on him when he died, Officer Fairbanks
and an older
.22 caliber revolver-style
six shooter, and a
rifle in the truck on the seat along with two knives in the white truck
that Roe drove to the gas station.
vehicle Roe had driven to the gas station was stolen, and when
investigators traced the vehicle back to the owner in the Sequim area,
they found out it belonged to Richard Ziegler. When investigators went
to Ziegler's address they discovered a third crime scene and another body.
was found shot dead on his lawn at
p.m. on Jonrey
Lane, just off Louella Road in the woods.
Richard Ziegler, 59, a retired California corrections employee moved
in May from
Los Osos, California after living there
for about twenty years,
"follow his dreams" and build a home on four acres he
purchased and to fish. Ziegler had purchased the land years before his
retirement. Before being a correctional officer Ziegler was a
professional home builder in Colorado.
Ziegler was living in a fifth-wheel trailer while building a
log cabin house nearby.
About 4 p.m. Saturday, Ziegler told his neighbors he'd just gotten
approval to install a septic system and about an hour later neighbors
remembered hearing gun shots about 5:00 p.m. coming from the Ziegler
Ziegler had been shot three times. The three agencies are among about 20 who helped in the search for
Because Fairbanks is
a federal officer, killed on federal land, the FBI has been called in to
handle the investigation. Shawn Roe was
owner of Custom Cuts Tree Topping.
Roe was a
convicted felon with "an active criminal history" and was supposed to be
under state Corrections Department supervision. Roe had a criminal
history and left his ex-wife fearing for her life.
Roe met his now
ex-wife, Mary Catherine White, on a ski trip. The two married in 1998 on
the front lawn of their house and have a young daughter.
Shawn Roe and Mary Catherine Roe were divorced in 2006. Roe was convicted in
2007 of unlawful imprisonment, a felony, and malicious mischief, a gross misdemeanor. Mary Catherine Roe told deputies she was afraid of her
husband and that he threatened her with a gun and had a
domestic-violence protection order against him in 2006.
pleaded guilty to unlawful imprisonment in 2006 for not allowing his
wife to leave their home.
When she tried to use her cell phone to
summon help, he shot the instrument with a firearm.
Roe had also threatened to burn his ex wife's mothers house down. She told deputies
in 2006 that
she had carried a 38 caliber gun in her purse for about a month to
North Thurston Public Schools district for protection.
school district placed her on administrative leave because it is against
state law to take a firearm to a school campus.
Mary Catherine Roe eventually resigned from her position as a language
arts teacher at the
Nisqually Middle School. Shawn Roe was
arrested July 21, 2008 in Mason County for failing to report to his
probation officer and for consuming alcohol. Roe was sent to jail for 60
days, 30 of which were spent outside of lockup on electronic home
monitoring. Roe finished this jail sentence on
August 10, 2008 and reported the next day to his community corrections
officer. Roe, who has previous convictions for domestic-violence-related
crimes, was wanted by the state Department of Corrections (DOC) for
failing to show up at an August 29, 2008 meeting with his probation officer. The
officer had requested an arrest warrant but Mason County Superior Court
had not yet issued it.
Roe was due in Mason County District
Court September 26, 2008 for carrying a gun, thus violating a protection
order that had been issued in 2007.
Often Officer Fairbanks
investigations were of timber thefts or salal "turf wars" in the 300,000
acres of national forest she patrolled in the Olympic Mountains. An
old-growth cedar could bring as much as $100,000 to a thief - often to
bankroll drugs - and salal is valued by florists for flower
arrangements. Ferns, mushrooms, moss, cedar bark and grass also are
prized - and poached. Fairbanks once estimated that three-quarters of
the greenery leaving the woods is harvested illegally, often by
undocumented migrant workers. Officer Fairbanks had teamed with three
K-9 's in her 15 years with the U.S. Forest Service. She made the news
almost as often, however, because of her K-9 partners. As of 2007,
Fairbanks was the only Forest Service officer in Washington state with a
canine partner, and only one of 40 in the United States. First there was Ruger, a German shepherd that was injured when he fell from a
helicopter. He needed back surgery, and retired when he was unable to
jump into Fairbanks' patrol car. Before then, though, Ruger subdued a
subject who'd attacked her with a knife - and again after the subject
tried a second time. Next came Hero, another German shepherd, who with
Fairbanks worked in the "other" Olympics - the 2002 Winter Games in Salt
Lake City. Hero, retired in 2003 because of arthritis, was euthanized in
2005 after he was diagnosed with cancer of the pancreas, stomach and
Fairbanks' latest partner
Radar, helped track down a robbery fugitive from Forks in April of 2008.
Late in 2007, they helped arrest another robbery suspect. A year ago,
Fairbanks and Port Angeles K-9 officer Cpl. Kevin Miller organized a
seminar that drew 90 trainees and their dogs for a three-day conference
in Port Angeles.
Officer Fairbanks funeral
on 9/29/08, was a
that included two songs chosen by Fairbanks' 15-year-old daughter,
Whitney that reflected her mother's zest for life and the land: "When I
Get Where I'm Going" by Brad Paisley and "Pocketful of Sunshine" by
Natasha Bedingfield. Two national anthems ( United States & Canada ) were played before over three
thousand people who attended the service.
Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire presented the flag to Officer Fairbanks
daughter, Whitney. One Hundred twenty K-9 handlers marched in the
procession with their K9'S by their side. A black, rider less horse was
led onto the field to symbolize the fallen officer. The U.S. Border
Patrol Pipe & Drum Corps performed "Amazing Grace," and the State Patrol
executed a 21-gun salute.
Fairbanks' K9 partner,
"Radar" who attended the service, is being cared for by a Port Angeles
police officer whom she previously had designated to take care of the
dog if something happened to her.
A crimson U.S. Coast Guard helicopter flew in
a slow loop across the sky.
An account has been set up
for donations to the Kristine Fairbanks Memorial Fund at First Federal
in Forks. The mailing address at the Forks Branch is P.O. Box 1467 Forks
WA 98331.Officer Fairbanks
is survived by a husband Brian, who is an officer with the state Department of
Fish and Wildlife, and a 15-year-old daughter, Whitney.
Officer Alfred C. Camino
September 12, 2008 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - Age 63
Alfred C. Camino died peacefully at home on Friday, Sept. 12, 2008,
of complications related to liver and colon cancer. He was 63.
Alfred enlisted in the armed services in 1963 and served two years
with the seventh Army in Baumholder, Germany. He joined the
Pittsburgh police bureau in 1969, initially serving as a patrolman
Zone 2 in
Hill District before becoming a K-9 officer. For 11 years until his
1995 retirement, he partnered with Joker, a male German shepherd mix
that was rescued from a Wilkinsburg animal shelter. The cremated
remains of Joker, dead since 1988, were interred with Mr. Camino.
He is survived by his wife Carol. The family suggests donations to be made to the Ben Roethlisberger
Foundation or the Giving Back Fund for K-9 Dogs, 6033 West Century
Blvd., Suite 240, Los Angeles, CA 90045
Officer Grant Anthony Jansen
September 10, 2008 - St. Charles, Missouri - Age 42
Officer Grant Jansen, 42, died on 9/10/08 when his patrol car ran
off Spencer Road near Elm Point Road in St. Peters Missouri. A
passer-by saw his car on fire -- but not the crash itself -- and called
police about 2:45 a.m. His cruiser left the road along a curve
and ended up in a ditch. Jansen
was thrown from his cruiser and died at the accident scene.
dog, Czar, rode in the back seat and also was ejected during the
crash, but was not hurt.
Jansen had just left work from
his overnight shift and was driving home in his patrol car when the
one vehicle crash happened. As
Jansen headed home on Highway 370, his cruiser got a flat, and a tow
truck driver changed the tire. About five minutes later, Jansen's
patrol car ran off the road, flipped several times and caught fire.
The dog, Czar, is a German shepherd that was
nearly forced to retire in 2006 after being diagnosed with an
autoimmune disorder. But Czar was rehabilitated and returned to work
as Jansen's partner. Jansen's work with Czar included keeping
an eye out for drug dealers who travel west on Interstate 70 with
drugs and return east with money.
Jansen's work with Czar
have been credited with seizing millions of dollars worth of illegal
drugs and cash.
Czar is now being cared for by
another K-9 handler with the St. Charles Police Department.
employed as a K9 Police Officer at St. Charles City Police
Department in St. Charles, Missouri. Officer Jansen was a 20
year law enforcement veteran, the last 13 years serving with the St.
Charles Police Department assigned as a K9 Officer. He previously
worked for the St. Charles County Sheriff's Office, as well as the
Berkeley Police Department. He was a member of the St. Charles
Police Officers Association, Fraternal Order of Police, Missouri
Police K9 Association, North America Police Working Dog Association,
and National Narcotics Detector Dog Association.
Jansen's wife works as a
dispatcher at the same department but was not on duty at the time of
Approximately 30 K9'S attended
officer Jansen's funeral. The
St. Charles City Council adopted a resolution on 10/7/08 to retire
Czar from police and be sent home with the officer's widow and two
Jansen is survived by his wife, Annette
37, a son, Tyler age 6; and a
daughter, Paige age 4.
Their first child, Cole, was stillborn. Donations also can be made
to the Grant Jansen Memorial Fund at the Private Bank, 1401 South
Brentwood Boulevard, St. Louis, Mo. 63144.
Two months after the
accident, toxicology tests offered no clue as to why his car left the
road that night. The autopsy failed to uncover a serious health problem.
Early speculation that he had fallen asleep proved false.
Police said the newly changed tire had
nothing to do with the accident.
who witnessed the crash are to call St. Peters police at
Officer Eric Lavoie
September 9, 2008 - Laval, Canada - Age 32
Eric Lavoie was a
police dog handler for the City
On August 12, 2005, Eric Lavoie, then
age 29 was
involved in a serious accident on
highway 13 when he lost control of his police cruiser in Laval while
responding to an emergency call. He hit a
concrete barrier and flipped several times and his cruiser ending up
in a ditch.
It is a road accident which caused
numerous injuries to police who responded to an emergency call.
Lavoie ended up paralyzed and in a coma and never fully recovered.
His health deteriorated over the years while confined to a bed at
Sacre-Coeur Hospital. Lavoie died of complications from pneumonia at
the age of 32.
started as a police officer in
He is survived by his wife and
Deputy Marty Martin
September 6, 2008 - Franklin County,Ohio - Age 35
Marty Martin, 35, was killed on September 6, 2008 while on duty in an
automobile accident in Ohio on I-71 at Stringtown Road at approximately 12:30 am. Deputy
died as he was being
rushed to Grant Medical Center. Martin had been working undercover with
Deputy Luke Holt, 31, when the sport-utility vehicle Holt was driving
apparently hydroplaned on the wet pavement, hit a culvert and flipped.
Holt who has been with the office since 2001 was in serous condition when taken to Grant
Deputy Martin had
served with the Franklin County Sheriff's Department for ten years.
Carrico-Martin, met him five years ago at her dog day-care center and
Martin, who trained police dogs, came to her business to give a
He was a certified
instructor for the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission Police Dog,
National Certifying Agent for Drug Beat, and Schutzhund sport dog
is a 1991 graduate of Whitehall High School, European Professional
soccer player; Columbus State Law Enforcement Degree; State Highway
Patrol; President of Hondensport Ohio Dog Club; and Co-owner of Liberty
May 3rd, 2008 HondenSport Ohio Schutzhund Trial his sport dog Charly
earned his IPO III and was high in Obedience and High in Protection. Detective Martin received the 2006 Safe Driver Award and the
Officer Appreciation Award, and in 2008 the Medal of Merit for
endangering his life to save a victim's life.
He died 2 days before his wife’s
At the graveside service, the mounted
unit walked by the casket, one of their horses without a rider, the
seven honor guard members fired their guns three times each, 21 shots in
all and three of the spent shells were slipped into a black velvet pouch
and given to Martin's 6-year-old son, Kyle. He is survived by his wife
Jody Carrico-Martin, six year old son Kyle
and K9 partner Bul.
Contributions may directed
to the Marty M. Martin Memorial c/o CME Federal Credit Unit, 365 S. 4th
St., Columbus OH 43215 or cmefcu.org.
Sgt. Gregory Allen Rodriguez
September 2, 2008 - Ana Kalay, Afghanistan - Age 35
Army Sgt. 1st Class Gregory
A. Rodriguez, 35, died September 2, 2008, of wounds suffered in Ana
Kalay, Afghanistan, when his mounted patrol came under small-arms fire.
His dog Jacko survived the ambush. Sgt. Rodriguez was a military police
dog handler and he and his dog were a
military special search dog team assigned to the K-9 unit of the 527th
Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, 18th MP
Brigade, based in Germany. He was a native of Weidman, Michigan. Rodriguez joined the Army Reserve in 1994. In 1996 he became an active
duty soldier. Survivors include his wife Laura and their three young
children, 8-year-old Gregory Jr., 7-year old Zachary and 3-year-old
Malory who were living in San Antonio,Texas, site of Lackland Air Force
Base, which houses the military's working dog programs. Rodriguez had
been stationed in Hawaii, Missouri, Alaska, Texas, and Germany. Rodriguez told his wife if anything happened to him during the
war he wanted to be buried at Arlington, " I want to be among the best
and the brave." His wife hopes the Pentagon will release the dog to the
family. On September 15 his funeral was held at Arlington National
Cemetery, with a memorial service later in Mount Pleasant. More than 100
mourners stood before a backdrop of floral arrangements and wreaths to
pay tribute to Rodriguez. They joined members of the 3rd U.S. Infantry
Regiment from Fort Myer who waited at the gravesite along with four dogs
from the same regiment. Rodriguez was buried in Section 60 of the
Corporal John William Belk III
August 24, 2008 - Auburn, Alabama - Age 39
John William Belk III, 39, died in an automobile accident on 8/24/08 in
Auburn, Alabama just after 2:30 p.m. He was off duty and sole occupant
driving his black jeep when his vehicle and a green Ford Explorer
collided head-on on Sandhill Road, just east of South College Street in
Auburn. Belk died of multiple blunt force injuries and was dead on
impact. He was wearing his seat belt at the time of the accident. Belk
was driving to a family member or friend's house for an early dinner
before he started work. The two occupants of the SUV fled on foot.
Opelika police used dogs to track the two, and both men were
apprehended. The driver, Jimmy Vickerstaff Jr., 31, of Auburn was
booked at 8:10 p.m. and charged with manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident with
injuries. He was booked into the Lee County Detention Facility and was
being held on bond. No charges have been filed against the passenger. An
investigation is under way to find out why Mr. Vickerstaff’s vehicle went out of control. Belk
worked previously at the Phenix City Police
Department and then the Opelika Police Department for 14 years, starting as a
patrolman and working his way up to a K9 officer and corporal. Corporal
Beck celebrated his 39th birthday just seven days before his death.
one thousand people attended
corporal Belk's funeral in Opelika. He leaves
behind two sons, Austin, 6, and J.W.Belk, IV, 10, and his wife, Janice
Causey Belk, who he
married in February, stepson Stephen Causey,
and stepdaughter Karri Eastridge. The city council recently agreed to give Corporal
police dog Ringo to his family.
A trust account is being set
up at Town-Country National Bank in Camden for Belk's two sons, J.W. and
Austin. Donations may be sent to: Hal Huggins, trustee, 3 Ponderosa
Place, Camden, AL 36726.
November 25, 2008 a lawsuit was filed in Lee County Circuit Court on
behalf of Belk's wife and two sons against Vickerstaff Jr. who
was driving the vehicle and against Shawn Teresa Patterson who allegedly
owned the car.
On March 9, 2009, Lee
County District Attorney said Jimmy Vickerstaff Jr. who was driving
under the influence of alcohol and cocaine pleaded guilty to
manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident in Lee County Circuit
Court and was sentenced to 10 years behind bars.
Lance Corporal Kenneth Michael Rowe
July 24, 2008 -
- Age 24
Lance Corporal Kenneth
Michael Rowe, 24, from Gosforth, Newcastle
was shot dead by Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan on July 24, 2008. He
had been due to fly home the day before he died , but had persuaded his
superiors in the British Army to let him stay because he feared a
shortage of dog handlers would put his comrades at increased risk of
roadside bombs. Rowe
had been on a routine patrol with his explosives sniffer-dog Sasha from
their base at FOB Inkerman in the Sangin area of Helmand when they came
under enemy fire. Both Rowe and K9 Sasha, a Labrador, were killed
instantly in the attack, while five other soldiers from 2nd Battalion
the Parachute Regiment and one from 3rd Battalion the Parachute Regiment
Rowe and his dog joined patrols
searching for enemy weapons, ammunition and explosives. Rowe had joined
the Army on March 7, 2005 and was sent to Afghanistan in 2008. His fatal
injuries were caused by shrapnel from a rocket propelled grenade and
enemy machine guns. He is survived by his parents Lyn and Kenneth and
His partner Helen Bell, 23, and daughter Hannah were among hundreds at
St Bartholomew's Church in Newcastle for his funeral service. When his
coffee was carried into the church, the song "
More Than Words", by Extreme, was played.
Rowe’s funeral was followed by a private cremation.
Officer Kenneth F. Reyda
July 20, 2008 - Fountain City, Tennessee - Age 38
Kenneth F. Reyda, 38, committed suicide on July 20, 2008 at his
Fountain City, Tennessee home by shooting himself in the head with
his department - issued .40 caliber semiautomatic pistol. Reyda did
not leave a suicide note. He was not on duty at the time and had
called in sick that day. An emergency call was made at 7:02 a.m. by
his wife. Reyda started with the Sheriff's Office in May 1994 as a
corrections officer. In 1997 he graduated from the Knox County
Sheriff's Office Training Academy, and a year later he was placed on
patrol as a K-9 officer. Reyda's K-9 partner, Nero, in 2002 was
named K-9 of the year for assisting in more than 40 arrests. Reyda's
most recent K-9 partner was Basko. Officer Ken Reyda was a 14- year
veteran of the Knox County Sheriff's Office. Officer Reyda is
survived by his wife Dena Ann Reyda and his two children, Preston 7,
and Emma 3. Ken also leaves behind his retired patrol partner K-9
Nero and present patrol partner K-9 Basko. There is a Trust Fund at
the Knoxville Law Enforcement Credit Union for Preston and Emma
Officer Joshua T. Miktarian
July 13, 2008 - Twinsburg, Ohio - Age 33
Officer Joshua T. Miktarian, 33, of
Tallmadge, was shot to death on July 13, 2008 during a routine
traffic check near
the intersection of S.R. 91 and Glenwood Drive. Officer Miktarian
with police dispatcher, Christine Franco, at 1:54 a.m. to determine who owned the purple
1998 Dodge Intrepid he pulled over.
Two minutes into the traffic stop
at 1:56 a.m., Miktarian calmly radioed for help
''Radio, ah send
Reminderville up here, I need another unit,''. They were the officer's last recorded words, a reference to the department that borders Twinsburg. Almost simultaneously a
neighbor, Mary Spisak, called 9-1-1 to report loud shouting and pop sounds. One minute later
at 1:57 a.m. police
dispatch radioed Miktarian but there was no response.
Patrick Quinn and officer David Fenske called out over their radios
and heard only silence.
from Twinsburg and surrounding communities immediately responded to
At 2:01, Officer Quinn
there is a dark object on the ground next to his cruiser. I can't
tell what it is.''
Within one minute, Officer Kenneth Kline arrived on scene. Seconds later they discovered Miktarian laying on the ground near
with his gun still holstered and
Thompson's driver's license and insurance card in Officer
Miktarian's front shirt pocket.
Officer Quinn and Officer Kline then carried Miktarian
across the street and behind their cruisers. Twinsburg Fire Fighter
and Paramedic, LT. John Dunn was the first medical officer on the
scene and helped load a non-responsive Miktarian onto a stretcher
and into an ambulance for a short trip to Gleneagles Golf Course
where a medical helicopter awaited.
Miktarian was flown
to Metro Health Medical Center in Cleveland, where he was pronounced
dead at 2:48 a.m. with four gunshot wounds to the side of the head at close
range with a 9 mm
One bullet struck Miktarian in
the left forehead just above his eyebrow, 2 bullets struck him in
the back left cheek and one just below the left ear. However, only a single bullet was
recovered from his body during the autopsy.
Thirty six hours later police went back to the crime scene to
recover bullets from the ground. They recovered 5 shell casings from
the scene and two more slugs
embedded between 4 and 5 inches
into Thompson's concrete driveway, directly beneath Miktarian's
head and one in a grassy area nearby.
There were four entry wounds and three exit wounds found on
driver’s license and proof of insurance was later found in the right
front breast pocket of Miktarian’s police uniform. All
of Officer Miktarian's rounds were accounted for, one 12-round
magazine in the gun, and two 12-round magazines in his holster.
Miktarian didn’t activate his remote control to open the door to let
his K9 Bagio
a German shepherd
who he was partnered with for six years.
When officers arrived the dog was still inside the cruiser
unharmed. Miktarian's cruiser was equipped with a dashboard camera
but it was an older model that was
inoperable. Miktarian may
not have known that
Thompson had a concealed-carry permit for a gun
when he approached the vehicle. They said he did not check the
registry on the car ahead of time. Miktarian
stopped Thompson in front of Thompson's house at 2454 Glenwood Drive
in Twinsburg for playing loud music and suspicion of driving under the influence.
girlfriend, Danielle Roberson of Macedonia, was with him during the stop and was outside the car when
the shots were fired then both fled the scene
Thompson’s sister’s house .
After they arrived, Roberson said
she took the gun from the center console of Thompson’s car and hid
it under some laundry on his sister’s couch. She said his sister
later moved the gun to the kitchen.
Miktarian called for backup and apparently tried to arrest
23, who had a handcuff on his right wrist
and clothes splattered in blood when he was arrested
at his sister's Bedford Heights residence on Cambridge Road by Bedford
He had been using
Vaseline in an effort to remove the cuff from his right hand.
struggled with the suspect trying to release the hold he had on the
refrigerator door, and to get him to comply but the struggle was so
intense that the refrigerator door was ripped off of its hinges.
Next to the refrigerator there was a stove where police found the
killed Miktarian in the oven.
Thompson was taken in at 2:41 a.m.
and taken to the Summit
less than an hour later.
recovered a receipt for the gun in a bedroom of the home where
Thompson lived with his mother.
Thompson had a concealed-carry
gun permit. Thompson is a licensed practical nurse. Miktarian joined the Twinsburg Police Department in 1997 after
working nearly a year as a Cuyahoga Falls police officer. He began
his law-enforcement career as a part-time officer in Uniontown in
April 1996. Earlier this year, Miktarian again began working part
time for Uniontown. Officer Miktarian was an 11-year veteran of the
Twinsburg department and is the first officer to be killed from the
Twinsburg Police Department in it's fifty-six year history.
Officer Miktarian attended the University of Akron where he earned a
degree in criminal justice.
Joshua owned a Gionino's Pizza franchise in Sagamore Hills Township
and was also a guitar player and song writer for the band Barium.
Miktarian found the love of his
life, Holly, while on duty. He was on a police chase and Holly, an
officer with the Oakwood Police Department, was called in as backup.
Joshua's wife had been out on maternity leave and was to return to
work the day after her husband was killed. More than 4,000 people
attended the church the day of his funeral. Also 120 K9's units
procession included Miktarian's police dog, Bagio, brought to the
service in the slain officer's squad car,
barking as the procession pulled in front of the church and then sat
in front, near the flag-draped coffin, during the service. The burial at Crown Hill Cemetery in
Twinsburg, which was closed to the public, included bagpipes, taps,
and a riderless horse. At the 30-minute service, it was announced
Miktarian's badge -number 45 - would be retired.
The graveside service concluded
with a three-round volley by the Euclid Police Rifle Squad and the
pipe and drum corps playing Amazing Grace. Then a radio dispatch
taking officer Miktarian out of service was broadcast throughout the
cemetery. ''May he rest in peace,'' the dispatcher said.
He graduated from Tallmadge High
School in 1993 and was captain of the football team.
Miktarian lived with his wife, Holly, an
Oakwood police officer, in Tallmadge with their 3-month-old
daughter, Thea. Miktarian's police dog will be given to Miktarian's
family. On July 26, 2008 a motorcycle memorial ride was held which
included over 2,000 riders each contributing $10 which raised over
$20,000 dollars for Miktarian's wife and daughter.
Donations may be made to the Twinsburg Police Association, Josh Miktarian Fund at any Fifth Third Bank or the Twinsburg Police
On July 13, 2009, over one thousand people were on hand for the
dedication of a black granite
monument to Officer Miktarian which is located at the Twinsburg
Government Center in Ohio. His Badge # 45 has been retired.
On July 1, 2015 another memorial was unveiled honoring Officer
Joshua Miktarian. The stone, paid for and dedicated by the Twinsburg
Police Association, is a 1,500-pound granite boulder with a bronze
plaque, color photo
and a description of his End-of-Watch and is next to his first
K9 Bagio was
diagonosed with cancer in January of 2011 and immediately had his
spleen removed but was only given 3-6 months to live. K9 Bagio was
euthanized on 4/11/11 at the age of 10 when he developed
complications from cancer
signs of distress.
Ashford Thompson has a sparse criminal
history. He was guilty of driving while intoxicated in Shaker
Heights Municipal Court in July 2007. Three months earlier he was
charged in Bedford Heights with possessing a firearm in a venue with
a liquor permit.
Twinsburg police last year also cited Thompson for having tinted
windows and Thompson paid $50 plus court costs for the offense.
was ticketed July 9, 2008 while
driving in Bedford by Bedford police officer David Dickson for
playing loud music
Thompson was to be
arraigned on July 23, 2008 on that traffic case but Bedford court
officials continued that arraignment after being notified that
Thompson was in Cuyahoga County Jail and a suspect in the shooting
of Miktarian. Bedford Municipal Court Judge Peter J. Junkin has
scheduled a status hearing on the Bedford traffic stop case on July
Bond was set at $5 million for
aggravated murder by Municipal
Judge Kim Hoover
following his video appearance in Cuyahoga Falls Municipal Court on
7/14/08 for the murder of Officer Miktarian and is claiming self
defense. Thompson was represented by Thompson remains in the Summit County Jail. A preliminary hearing
for July 21 , 2008. was postponed untill July 25, 2008.
Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in the murder of Twinsburg
Police Office Joshua Miktarian. Ashford Thompson has been indicted
on a charge of aggravated murder of a police officer, which carries
the death penalty in Ohio.
The indictment includes, two counts of aggravated murder, two counts
escape, two counts of resisting arrest , three counts of tampering
with evidence, and one count of carrying a concealed weapon.
On July 25, 2008 Thompson
in Summit County Common Pleas Court and Magistrate John
Shoemaker ordered Thompson to be held without bond.
His case was assigned to Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer. Larry Zukerman,
Thompson's attorney, who earlier claimed Thompson shot Miktarian in
self defense, withdrew from the case.
attorneys John Alexander and Anthony Koukoutas
are Thompson's new attorneys which were at
a pretrial on August 6, 2008.
Common Pleas Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer set another pre-trial for
Aug. 13. and set Oct. 6, 2008 for jury selection to begin and
Ashford Thompson is scheduled to go on trial October 14, 2008. On
August 20, 2008, documents were filed by
Summit County Court of Common Pleas Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer
to have new trial dates because of
the need for additional preparation time.
Thompson's attorney and lead counsel is now
The trial is now scheduled to begin Jan. 29, 2009, before Stormer.
Jury selection is set to begin Jan. 12, 2009. In January the trial
was postponed until April 6, 2009 when jury selection will begin and
trial start April 13, 2009.
2009 Ashford Thompson hired new attorneys,
Powers to represent him.
On April 3, 2009,
waived his right
to a jury trial and agreed to have a three-judge panel decide the
case. Summit County Common Pleas Judges Elinore Marsh Stormer,
Brenda Burnham Unruh and Paul Gallagher will hear the case. On April
2009 Ashford Thompson's was brought into court at 1:50 p.m. and his
trial started at 1:52 p.m. At 1:53 p.m. Ashford Thompson voluntarily
pleaded guilty. At 3:53 p.m.
the three judge panel
found Ashford Thompson guilty of all charges against him and the
sentencing phase of the trial will begin on May 26, 2009. Ashford
Thompson is due back in court on October 15, 2009.
The October sentencing was delayed
and rescheduled for November 12, 2009. On November 12,
2009, the sentencing hearing was delayed because his attorneys
dropped out saying their client "undermined" their relationship.
In a brief to the
court requesting permission to withdraw as counsel, defense
attorneys Eddie Sipplen and Annette Powers said that Thompson has
"made a number of complaints and objections about counsel." The
brief also said a jail conference a couple of days before the
sentencing convinced the lawyers that the relationship between
lawyer and client had been destroyed. "Counsel informed Mr. Thompson
that because of his words and actions, including threats of filing a
bar grievance and other legal actions, that the attorney/client
relationship is irrevocably damaged." Thompson had apparently
complained in a hearing earlier that he was not properly informed of
his constitutional rights in meetings that led to his April 13
guilty plea. Thompson submitted a letter to Stormer Nov. 2
explaining that he had not yet received a copy of Miktarian's
personnel file, which Thompson said he requested "several times"
from Sipplen and Powers. "This is a violation of my due process,"
Thompson wrote. "Without receiving all of the requested information,
I cannot proceed with mitigation hearings." The letter to Stormer
asks for Miktarian's "complete unredacted police records ... any
complaints, disciplinary action, racial harassment, etc." It means
that sentencing will be delayed indefinitely while Thompson either
hires another set of lawyers — his fifth — or the court appoints
them for him. Also Summit County Common Pleas Judge Patricia A.
Cosgrove will replace Judge Brenda Burnham Unruh on the three-judge
panel that is to decide the sentence. It now is possible, with the
impending appointment of two new lawyers to represent Thompson, that
his next defense team — his fifth — could petition the court to
vacate his guilty pleas. If that were to happen, the case could go
back to square one and Thompson then could ask for a jury trial. On
November 23, 2009 Kerry M. O'Brien and John W. Greven have been
appointed to represent Ashford Lamar Thompson. A status hearing for
all parties, including Thompson, his new attorneys and prosecutors,
was set for Dec. 18, 2009. On December 18, 2009,
Ashford Thompson took back his
April 13, 2009, guilty plea, and a jury trial has now been scheduled
for May 24, 2010. At
the Dec. 18, 2009 status hearing,
Thompson’s April guilty plea was deemed void, according to Judge
Stormer, and an initial not-guilty plea following his July 25, 2008,
arraignment at the county court is now valid. Judge Stormer said the
April 13, 2009 guilty plea was voided and the same-day conviction
thrown out because of case law the Ohio Supreme Court handed down in
June requiring court officials to explain post-release control or
parole conditions to defendants before a defendant enters a plea or
is sentenced. If this explanation does not take place, a plea or
sentence can be considered void, Judge Stormer said. Now Thompson
has requested a jury trial this time rather than a bench trial.
Judge Stormer appointed Greven and Kerry O’Brien to defend Thompson.
Jury selection started May 17, 2010. The
jury trial started May 24, 2010. On June 3, 2010
was found guilty by three white females, one black female, seven
white males and one black male which comprised the jury of 12. He
was found guilty on all counts in about
five-and-a-half hours, including two counts of aggravated murder
with death penalty specifications, in the July 2008 fatal shooting
of Officer Miktarian. The jury foreman also pronounced
Thompson guilty of one count of escape, two counts resisting arrest,
three counts tampering with evidence and one count of carrying a
On June 10,
2010, a sentencing hearing started and
the panel reached a unanimous decision in the capital murder case at
10:30 a.m. on June 11, 2010 after three hours of deliberations over
parts of two days and the jury recommended the death sentence.
On June 23, 2010, just before11:30 a.m., Judge Stormer
sentenced Ashford Thompson to death by lethal injection for the killing of Officer Miktarian. Judge
Stormer then set an
execution date for June 23, 2011. Ashford Thompson
was then transported
to death row at
the Ohio State Penitentiary in Youngstown. Ohio.
Executions are conducted at a state prison in Lucasville.
the appeal July 26, 2011 to be heard by the Ohio Supreme Court. The Ohio
Supreme Court heard an appeal on 4/8/14 from convicted murderer Ashford
Lamar Thompson in the July 13, 2008, murder of Twinsburg Police Canine
Officer Joshua Miktarian.
Thompson appealed the conviction and death sentence directly to the Ohio
Supreme Court and then presented 18 claims of errors during his trial.
October 29, 2014 the Ohio Supreme Court
opinion written by Justice Judith L. French,
upheld Ashford Thompson's aggravated murder conviction for the 2008
slaying of a Twinsburg police officer deciding that the death penalty
Judith Ann Lanzinger, Paul E.
Pfeifer, William M. O'Neill, Terrence O’Donnell, Sharon Kennedy and
Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor handed down the sentence.
Thompson's death sentence, according to an entry filed
with the high court's 90-page decision, is scheduled to be carried out
April 5, 2017.
Officer Kenneth Greg Surles
July 4, 2008 - Pell City, Alabama - Age 29
On June 18, 2008, K9 officer Greg
Surles was seriously injured while on duty when an 18-wheel truck
slammed into the side of his police car shortly before 4 p.m. at the
intersection of U.S. 231 and Cropwell Drive/Kings Circle in Alabama.
Surles was crossing U.S. 231 from Kings Circle when the truck, traveling
south on U.S. 231, hit the driver’s side of the squad car. The truck
jackknifed along U.S. 231, and the impact sent Surles’ police vehicle
into a ditch south of the intersection. The driver of the truck, James
Michael Scogins, 44, of Pell City was taken to St. Vincent’s St. Clair
in a private vehicle. Greg Surles was initially unconscious when rescue
workers first arrived at the scene, but he later became conscious before
being taken to Birmingham. A Lifesaver helicopter transported Surles to
University Hospital in Birmingham, where he was taken into surgery with
massive internal injuries. Greg was being treated for numerous broken
bones and a torn aorta. Officer Greg Surles died sixteen days later at
9:50 a.m. on July 4, 2008. His first job in law enforcement
was with the Talladega County Sheriff’s Department. He worked with that
department for two years before taking a job with the Odenville Police
Department. Surles worked as a police and K-9 officer with the Odenville
Police Department from 1999-2002. When he joined the Pell City Police
Department he was a K9 officer for Pell City for approximately six
His badge number 828 was retired and taken out of service
in his honor.
emergency vehicles, including a law enforcement helicopter, led a
300-vehicle procession to the cemetery.
Robin Surles was
presented the Medal of Honor posthumously for her husband duties.
Surles is survived by his wife Robin, who he was married
to for five years, their 4-year-old daughter Makensi and 11-week-old
daughter Madalyn and his K9 partner Brando.
can be made to the Greg Surles Fund at Metro Bank, 800 Martin St S, Pell
City AL 35128.
Michael Scogins, 44, of Pell City was arrested on September 22, 2008 and
charged with the manslaughter death of Pell City police officer Greg
Surles. A St. Clair County grand jury indicted Scogins in the
manslaughter death of Surles and he was released after posting his
Clair County Circuit Court
to one year and one day in jail and four years of supervised probation.
Robin, has filed a lawsuit naming James Michael Scogin and Hugghins
Transportation Inc. who Scogin worked for at the time of the accident.
Sgt. Robert Johnsey
May 5, 2008 - Westbrook, Maine - Age 37
Robert Johnsey, 37,
of Westbrook, Maine died just before midnight on May 5, 2008. Sgt.
Johnsey accidentally shot himself at home with his duty weapon, a Smith &
.45-caliber pistol, while preparing his belt for the next work
was transferring the Smith & Wesson service weapon from his utility
belt to replace it with a new Glock 9 mm, to which the department is
Westbrook Police responded to an emergency call from
the wife of Robert Johnsey around 11:30 p.m. at 31 Deer Hill
Ave and found Robert
Johnsey unconscious with a gunshot wound in his leg. The
bullet struck his femoral
severing it causing a large amount of blood loss. Westbrook
Sgt. Patrick Lally and Officers Tom Roach and Brett Bissonnette
administered first aid until an ambulance arrived and transported
Johnsey to Maine Medical Center, where he died at 11:55 p.m. despite
the efforts of Westbrook police, who applied a tourniquet to his
leg, and rescue workers who treated him while rushing to the
worked for Portland Police for nine years.
He was born July 23,
1970, in New Haven, Connecticut. He was raised in East Haven and
Guilford, Conn., before graduating from Guilford High School in
1988. In 1989 Sergeant Johnsey enlisted in the United States Army
National Guard in Connecticut and graduated from the United States Army Military
Police Academy at Fort McClellan, Ala. Sergeant Johnsey was hired by
the Connecticut Department of Corrections in 1990 and graduated with
honors from the Corrections Academy. He served with distinction at
the Cheshire Maximum Security Prison until called to active duty in
December of 1990. Sergeant Johnsey deployed to Saudi Arabia with the
143rd Military Police Company in support of Desert Shield and Desert
Storm. He was recognized for service with two certificates of
achievement and the Army Achievement Medal. He returned from active
duty in April of 1991. In 1992, Sergeant Johnsey was employed by
the Federal Corrections Institute at Danbury by the United States
Department of Corrections. In 1995, Sergeant Johnsey moved to
Florida and was commissioned as a Deputy with the Collier County
Sheriff's Office and graduated as valedictorian of his Corrections
Academy Class. In 1996, he attended the Florida Law Enforcement
Academy and was again Valedictorian of his class. He was also
awarded the Top Gun award as the Academy's outstanding marksman.
Sergeant Johnsey came to the Portland Police Department in August
1999. His career in Portland has been marked by service on the front
lines of Patrol and by his desire to constantly improve himself. In
September of 2003, Sergeant Johnsey was certified as a Crisis
Intervention Specialist dealing with people in mental health crisis.
In May of 2004, he was certified as a K-9 handler along with his
partner K-9 Carr.
Johnsey's police dog "Carr",
was retired when Johnsey was promoted to sergeant.
On Jan. 1, 2007,
Sergeant Johnsey was promoted to the rank of Sergeant and assigned
to oversee police operations at the Portland Jetport. He returned to
patrol duties on Aug. 5, 2007, with his assignment to the Evening
Directed Patrol Unit. In December of 2007, Sergeant Johnsey was
named as supervisor of the Department's K-9 Unit. Sergeant
Johnsey has received numerous commendations, recognitions, and
letters of appreciation from the public.
Johnsey was named Portland Police Officer of the Month in
July 2000 and City of Portland Employee of the Month in February
He leaves behind a wife, Carol
Clark Johnsey and two children,
Rachel,12, and Alexander Joseph age 9. A
scholarship fund has been set up for his children and donations
can be made to the
Sgt. Robert Johnsey Memorial
Scholarship, C/O Portland Police Dept. Federal Credit Union, 109
Middle Street, Portland, Maine 04101. Please make the check out to:
Sgt. Robert Johnsey Memorial Scholarship Fund.
Corporal Mark Anthony Beck
February 25, 2008 - Baton Rouge, Louisiana - Age 33
Sgt. Donald Theronnie Tabb
February 5, 2008 - Sangin, Afghanistan - Age 29
Officer Mark Beck, 33, of Zachary, Louisiana
died in a car crash at
11:30 p.m. on 2/25/08 when his 2005 Chevy Impala cruiser slammed
into the rear of the 1996 Freightliner tractor
trailer carrying methanol.
The tractor trailer was northbound on US 61 and activated
his hazard lights as it
approached the railroad tracks just north of Thomas Road. The
driver of the Freightliner, Bernard Jones, 63, of Prairieville
came to stop as required by law due to the nature of his cargo. Bernard
Jones was not injured in the
crash. Both drivers were wearing seat belts. Officer Beck
was transported from the scene by Acadian Ambulance Air Med. He
was pronounced dead at Earl K. Long Hospital. Officer Beck’s
K-9 "Zander", a
2-year-old Belgian Malinois,
inside a kennel in the back
and survived the crash.
Results of an autopsy showed Beck suffered multi-system trauma
in which several of Beck’s internal organs were damaged in the
driving home after working an extra-duty job at a Baton
Officer Mark Beck, a former detective with the Baton Rouge
Police Department recently fulfilled his dream of being a K-9
Beck joined the
Police Department in September 2001 after leaving the Livingston
Parish Sheriff’s Office. He worked in uniform patrol from 2001 through
August 2004, earning four letters of commendation from
supervisors and a life-saving medal for helping residents of an
apartment complex escape a fire, After with the department’s robbery division
from 2004 - 2007, Beck was
transferred to the K-9 division.
Officer Beck died one day before his one year anniversary of
joining the canine unit.
He was a member of
the U.S. Police K-9 Association Region 10 and Baton Rouge Police
Department Honor Guard.
Beck's wife of two years, Michelle, is a former Zachary Police Officer who left
the department a few weeks ago for a position with the Division
of Probation and Parole. He was the father of two sons,
Baton Rouge Union of Police has set up an account at Capital One
Bank under the name "Fallen Heroes Account." All proceeds will
go directly to Beck's family.
Police are examining
Beck’s patrol car to make sure there were no mechanical flaws
that contributed to the crash but their investigation is
incomplete. At the time of the accident, Cpl. Beck did not have
any alcohol in his system. Cpl. Mark Beck’s blood-alcohol level
tested at 0.00 percent on Feb. 25. Toxicology results are not
back for Beck.
Staff Sgt. Donald T. Tabb, 29, of Norcross, Ga., was
killed around 2 p.m. on February 5, 2008 after his vehicle struck an
improvised explosive device in Sangin, Afghanistan. Tabb was patrolling
a road along the Helmand River in a joint patrol coalition/Afghan patrol
when their vehicle hit a mine planted on the road. The blast resulted
in Tabb being wounded and injured two other soldiers. Sergeant Tabb was
immediately medically evacuated to Camp Bastian but succumbed to his
wounds in-flight prior to arrival.
He was a dog handler serving in Afghanistan with the Combined Joint
Special Operations Task Force. Tabb worked as a dog handler with a 2
year old black Labrador bomb sniffing dog named “Bo” who was injured in
the attack that killed Tabb, but survived. His K-9 partner "Bo" was
wounded above his left eye and was sent back to the U.S. to attend his
handlers funeral February 16, 2008 who was buried
at Georgia National Cemetery
in Canton, Georgia.
Donald entered the Army on February 6, 1999, attending basic training
and advanced individual training at Fort McClellan, Alabama. Tabb
recently completed the Army's dog-handling course reserved for
high-performing military policemen. Tabb was serving with the 6th
Military Police Detachment, 13th Aviation Regiment. Tabb left for
Afghanistan in October and was his fifth deployment. Donald served as a
gunner, driver, team leader, squad leader, platoon sergeant, special
reaction team leader, U.S. customs inspector and specialized search dog
handler. Donald's military deployments were to Kosovo, Iraq and two
tours to Afghanistan. SSgt. Tabb is survived by his mother, Gloria
Smith. He is also survived by two sisters, Khadjha and Ebonee, and two
brothers Robert and Willie.
Bo, due to his injuries, was retired from military service on April 18,
2008 and was adopted by Tabb's brother, Willie Smith.
Traditionally, a military working dog outranks the handler by one grade.
Bo was officially retired as master sergeant. Tabb, was posthumously
promoted to sergeant first class on April 18, 2008, at a ceremony held
at the Gwinnett County Fallen Heroes Memorial. In May of 2013
Rucker dedicated its Military Working Dog kennels in honor of Sgt. 1st
Class Donald T. Tabb and will now be known as the Tabb Kennels.
Deputy Anthony Sean Pursifull
January 10, 2008 - Pineville, Kentucky- Age 31
Deputy Sean Pursifull , 31,
was killed on
January 10, 2008 following an early morning police chase in
Pineville, Kentucky. The incident unfolded when David J.
Poppiti, the driver age17, from New Castle, Delaware and Eric J. Gerren, 16, from
off from a Exxon gas station in Harlan County Kentucky without
paying $37.95 at 12:35 a.m. The teens then drove away
from the gas station in Baxter and police followed them down U.S.
119 into Bell County. State police said the car was chased on wet
approximately 26 miles and speeding in a 55
mile-per-hour zone when two state troopers attempted to stop the
vehicle during a pursuit. Troopers saw the car south on U.S. 119 and
clocked it speeding 16 mph over the limit, state police said. Deputy Pursifull was stationed on the northbound side of U.S. 119 in his
vehicle when the teen's car veered over the center line and
intentionally rammed into Pursifull's cruiser on the right side.
There were no skid marks from the teens car and police chasing them
said their brake lights didn't come on before the accident crash at
approximately 1:00 a.m. The police estimated the car was going well over 100 mph when it left
the road. Bell County Deputy Sean Pursifull had been waiting along
the shoulder of the highway with his lights on ready to assist in capturing the suspects. The
teenage driver hit Pursifull's cruiser, killing him and his K9
partner, "King", who was a 5 year old German Shepherd
partnered with him since 2005. The violent
crash from the teens vehicle almost went all the way through the
deputy's cruiser. When police approached the teens car after the
crash, one of them yelled, "We have a gun and you better shoot us."
Police found a gun that wasn't loaded that appeared to be altered. At the time another state police officer was
stationed just past the crash site, getting ready to put out spikes
to deflate the tires on the Mazda before the chase entered
Pineville. David Poppiti and Eric Gerren were treated
for minor injuries and released from a hospital and jailed in the
Adair County Juvenile Detention Center.
Poppiti is charged with
murder of a police officer, assault on a service animal, speeding,
fleeing and evading police, theft and having no license. Gerren has
been charged with murder of a police officer and assault on a
Eric Gerren had been reported
missing a couple of days before the accident.
They were stopped by a
Delaware State Police trooper five days earlier, according to
approached and questioned the teens and an unidentified 18-year-old,
Poppiti allegedly threw a bag of marijuana on the ground and ran.
Gerren and the other man were taken into custody but not charged,
and Gerren was turned over to his father. Police said arrest
warrants were pending for Poppiti on charges of marijuana possession
and resisting arrest.
Kentucky law considers K-9s to be law
Pursifull had been a
Sheriff Deputy for the past six years and before that started his
career as an officer with the Pineville Police Department.
Pursifull and his dog made up the K-9 unit at
the 25-man sheriff's department in the county that has an estimated
population of just under 30,000. Eleven hundred people
attended his funeral and filed past two rose covered coffins for
Deputy Pursifull and his K9 partner "King" who were buried
side by side. Deputy Pursifull is survived
wife, Melonie Deana Horn Pursifull and two
daughters, Victoria Alexis Pursifull and Franki Seantae Pursifull, ages seven and eleven.
The Bell County
Sheriff's Office has set up a memorial fund for Pursifull's family.
Donations can be mailed to Anthony Sean Pursifull Memorial Fund,
First State Financial, P.O. Box 37, Pineville, Ky. 40977, or dropped
off at any First State Financial location.
Melonie Deana Horn Pursifull has brought a civil case against two
Kentucky State Troopers,
KSP Troopers Ken Abner
and Robert Farley which cite “negligence” in the death. The suit,
accuses the defendants in the filed complaint saying “the defendants
each were operating motor vehicles in a careless and negligent
manner so as to cause a collision with a motor vehicle which the
decedent (Anthony Sean Pursifull) was occupying.” The
plaintiff says that “as a direct and proximate result” of those
actions, her husband sustained injuries which resulted in his death.
The plaintiff seeks damages from the defendants, jointly and
severally, because of the following: “the wrongful death of the
decedent”; “the resultant loss to his estate representing the
economic loss of his earning power”; “his funeral and burial
expenses”; and damages for the “loss to the minor children of the
services, comfort and society of their parent, the decedent.”
Stephanie Bowles, who was carrying Anthony Sean Pursifull’s child at
the time of his death, recently joined the suit with Melonie
Pursifull against Abner and Farley on March 10, 2009.
Both teenagers have past criminal records in
Gerren had two charges in Delaware: offensive touching in 2005 and
underage drinking last September, which landed him on probation for
a year. Poppiti was a ninth grade drop out with a past record
of being charged with trespassing;
attempting to engage in misdemeanor conduct; resisting arrest;
attempted robbery; conspiracy; and several times with offensive
touching. In May, Poppiti was charged with second-degree assault for
allegedly slugging another teenager in the cheek without warning,
fracturing a bone. The victim told police Poppiti allegedly hit him
in retaliation for an incident a year earlier when Poppiti was
drinking alcohol at the boy's house and he made Poppiti leave,
according to a court record. Poppiti pleaded guilty to an amended
charge. He was given a curfew and ordered to attend anger management
classes and undergo a psychological evaluation.
On January 11, 2008
Poppiti and Gerren
both entered not-guilty pleas. On
January 31, 2008 they had a court appearance which was to decide whether they will be tried as
adults. On January 31, 2008 the court rescheduled their court appearance
until February 11, 2008.
A hearing that was held
on February 11, 2008 has been continued for a second time to March
On March 12, 2008
a Bell County District
Judge, Robert Costanzo, ruled the driver the of a car,
David J. Poppiti,
will be tried as an
Gerren's case will
remain in juvenile court by agreement of the lawyers in the case.
Gerren's next court appearance is on May 21, 2008.
Circuit Judge James L.
Bowling Jr. recused himself from the case in May 2008 of David J.
Poppiti. because he attended Pursifull's funeral and because the
sheriff's office works closely with the court system.
May 21, 2008 David Poppiti's defense attorneys asked Special Judge
Roderick Messer to send the case back to juvenile court and because
of pre-trial publicity. They also want it moved out of Bell County.
His next court appearance was on June 11, 2008. and Poppiti’s
attorneys argue it would be hard for Poppiti to get a fair trial in
Bell County because of pre-trial publicity. The judge is considering
the change of venue request before making a final decision. Trial
date has been set for March 2009. In March the trial date was moved
up again to April 17, 2009. On April 17, 2009,
the judge moved back the
hearing for David Poppiti after court officials neglected to have
him brought to court. Poppiti's defense attorney, Sam Castle, said
he thought David Poppiti would be transported to the court
hearing and didn't make arrangements for him. The court date was
then moved up to May 4, 2009. On may 4, 2009, Poppiti's trial
started and after two days of damaging testimony on May 6, 2009, he
pleaded guilty to fleeing and evading police.
An Ex-Kentucky State Trooper,
Dwayne Scott Moore, 45, who was in jail
with Poppiti testified he overheard the teen say the wreck was not
an accident, and that he laughed about it. The plea agreement calls
for twenty years on the murder charge and five years for fleeing and
evading police to be served consecutively. The murder conviction is
considered a violent offense, so Poppiti will have to serve 85
percent of the 20 years before being eligible for parole.
Pursifull's mother OK'd the deal for Poppiti to plead guilty. On
June 8, 2009, David Poppiti was sentenced to twenty five years.
Officer Darrell Burris
November 15, 2007 - Carmel, New York - Age 37
Darrell Burris, 37, died in a car accident on November 15, 2007 while off
duty in Carmel, New York. The accident happened at 6:45 p.m. on Drewville Road when he lost
control of his personal 2003 Toyota SUV vehicle and veered into an on
coming SUV driven by 29-year-old Adam Warm of Patterson, NY, who had his
1-year- old son as a passenger. Burris was taken to the Putnam Hospital
Center in Carmel, where he was pronounced dead. Adam Warm and
his son were taken to Danbury Hospital in Connecticut and treated for
non-life-threatening injuries. A 19-year-old
Brewster man, Ethan Taublib, was also injured when he drove into the
wreck and was treated at Putnam Hospital Center. Officer Burris died
three days before his 38th birthday and one day before he was going to
be promoted to Sergeant. Officer Burris was returning home from the
hospital where he had some tests done when the accident occurred. Cold Spring has a
part-time police department, with Burris as the only full-time officer. Officer Burris had been
partnered with his K9 “Duncan” for only one year who was a black
Labrador, who recently turned 3 years old. Burris and Duncan earned a
trip to compete in the United States Police Canine Association's National
Detector Trials when they beat out 16 out of 17 teams from New
York and Connecticut in the Region 7 Narcotics Detector Trials at the
Orange County Sheriff's K-9 Academy in Montgomery. When Officer Burris
and K9 “Duncan competed at the United States Police Canine Association's
National Narcotics Detector Trials in Cloquet, Minnesota in May,
2007, against 79 teams of narcotics-detector dogs
and their handlers, he finished fifth in the vehicle search narcotic
detector category. The team is judged on how fast the dog can detect
hidden drugs. Officer Burris
said the success of him and his K9 “Duncan” were due to Sgt. David
Campbell and Deputy James Cleary of the Orange County Sheriff’s Canine
Academy, and Sgt. William Finucan of the MTA Police.
Burris had worked as a
dispatcher for ten years at the state police barracks in Somers,
was former officer for the Pound Ridge
and then joined the Cold
Spring department where he was employed for six years and became the
head of the 14-member force.
He was a proud member of the the North American Police Work Dog
Association and the US Police K-9 Association.
He was also a veteran of the Coast
Guard. The new sergeant's badge that was to be
given to Officer Darrell Burris was pinned to the Cold Spring police
uniform that he wore at his funeral.
After the Funeral Mass, Darrell was cremated.
More than 100 police canine officers with their canines attended
the funeral. Officer Burris
leaves behind his wife Linda, and fourteen-year-old son Ryan,
along with his
canine partner, Duncan. K9 Duncan
was given to his wife Linda
to raise with her family. Contributions in his memory
may be made to The Orange County K-9 Academy, P.O. Box 221, Montgomery,
Agent Julio E. Baray
September 24, 2007 - Moriarty Airport, New Mexico - Age 39
Agent Julio Baray was killed September
24, 2007 at 10:25 a.m. in an
aircraft accident at Moriarty Airport, New Mexico. A second agent,
was a flight instructor on board
small plane, a Cessna 210 suffered burns
and lacerations in the crash
transported to University of New Mexico Hospital on a medical transport
Baray was taking pilot training from Agent Houting at the time,
practicing take-offs and landings. Investigators are not sure what
caused the plane to go down, but it went off the runway and caught fire.
to one eyewitness, it appeared the aircraft was preparing to land on
runway 26 when the plain appeared to stall and the left wing hit the
ground and the plain went nose
Agent Houting had to be
restrained several times because he continued to keep going back to the
wreckage in flames to free
Agent Baray. Because of the amount of
intense flames they thought the aircraft would explode. Baray had served with the United
States Border Patrol for 9 years and was undergoing pilot training for
Air and Marine at the time of the crash. He received a bachelor of
science degree in criminal justice from the University of Texas at El
Paso in 1994 and a master of science in criminal justice from New Mexico
State University in 1998. Baray joined the U.S. Customs and Border
Protection Agency in 1998 and was assigned to the El Paso Sector. During
his service, he became a senior agent and canine handler. His canine
Axel, a Belgian Malinois, who Julio trained was retired and turned over
to the Baray family. He is survived by his wife Melissa Dorrance-Baray
and her two sons, Angel, age 9 and Victor Baray age 5.
SSGT. Charles Mike Long
September 3, 2007 - Rittman, Ohio - Age 30
SSgt. Charles Long, 30, died
on September 3, 2007 from injuries sustained in a motorcycle accident.
He was a K9 handler with the 822d SFS and then transferred to the 824
SFS. Stationed at Moody Air Force Base in Valdosta, Georgia. At
Lackland Air Force Base he was the Team Leader of Specialized Search Dog
( SSD ) Team # 2. He spearheaded the research of Sentry Dog Nemo. People
with his group raised funds for the headstone that is now part of the
Nemo Memorial at Lackland. In 2006 Long was deployed to Kirkuk, Iraq. He
also served in Korea, Kosovo and Turkey.At the service SSGT. Long
received full military honors, a bugler, gun salute, and Honor Guard.
Long was buried at Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetary in Rittman,
Ohio. SSGT. Long is survived by his fiancée and a son Nicholis and a son
that is on the way who will be named Charles Michael Long III.
August 5, 2007 - Winnsboro, South Carolina - Age 24
Deputy Peake, 24, died on
8/5/07 when he became trapped in a house fire at 4:00 a.m. which claimed
his life in Winnsboro, Wisconsin. An investigation showed he was
sleeping in the bedroom at the time and was trying to escape to a door.
His wife and two children were not home at the time of the fire.
Peake had been with the Fairfield County Sheiff's Department for eight
months and was their K9 Officer. Deputy Peake is survived by his wife
Amanda Peake, a son Cameron, 5, and a daughter Sarah, 1.
Officer Curtis James Gooden
July 29, 2007 - Texarkana, Texas - Age 38
Curtis James Gooden Jr.,
38, of Texarkana, Texas, died July 29, 2007, in Murfreesboro, Ark. He
was a K-9 officer with Texarkana Independent School District Police
Department in Texas. He died off duty during a motorcycle ride with a
small party of riders on Arkansas Highway 27 North near Kirby. The
accident happened at 12:28 p.m. while riding his new 2007 Suzuki
motorcycle down a slopping curve and failed to negotiate the curve. He
left the road on the east side of the highway and flipped end over end
seven times covering seventy four yards. His insurance had gone into
effect two days earlier. An investigation showed he was wearing his
helmet at the time of the accident and he was not speeding and there
were no skid marks. Officer Gooden had taken a three year hiatus from
riding motorcycles and recently purchased a motorcycle. He had been with
the Texarkana Police Department for seven years.
Roby were seen every day in the hallways and in the parking lots of the
Officer Gooden was buried with full police honors and buried at Cedar
Springs Cemetery in Hooks, Texas. Survivors include five children, Terry
Tatum Gooden, Curtis James Gooden III, Ashlee Gooden, Trevon Gooden and
Cashlin Joren Gooden and his K9 partner Roby.
Cpl. Kory D. Wiens
July 6, 2007 - Muhammad Sath, Iraq - Age 20
Army Cpl. Kory D.
Wiens and his K9 "Cooper" were killed while on patrol on July 6, 2007 by
an explosive in the town of Muhammad Sath, Iraq.
assigned to the 94th Mine Dog Detachment, 5th Engineer Battalion, 1st
Engineer Brigade, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri.
Wiens and his dog were trained to find materials such as TNT, detonation
cords, smokeless powder, mortars, weapons, tools and explosive residue
used to make explosives. Kory enlisted into the Army to gain experience
for pursuing a career in law enforcement. He attended canine school at
the 341st Training Squadron, Lackland Air Force Base in San
Antonio, Texas, where he met his partner, a yellow Labrador Retriever
named " Cooper ". The two deployed to Iraq in January. Their abilities
to detect TNT, C4, detonation cords, smokeless powder and mortars saved
countless lives by taking explosives and other IED manufacturing
materials off the streets of Iraq. Kory was a wrestler and quarterback
of the football team at West Albany High School where he graduated in
2005. When Kory was born he was named after
his grandfather who was a canine handler during the Korean War. Kory and
were the first K9 team to be killed together since the
Cpl Kory D. Wiens and his K9 "Cooper" were escorted back to his home
town of Independence, Oregon by his older brother Kevin who was also
serving on a second tour in Iraq as a military police officer for the
K9 teams from the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps and area police
department K9 teams from around the state attended the
funeral on July 18, 2007. Kory was buried at Salt Creek Cemetery in his
hometown of Dallas, Oregon. Wiens was awarded a number of medals posthumously: The Bronze
Star, Purple Heart, Army Conduct Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal and the
Glogal War on Terrorism Medal. Kory and his K9 partner "Cooper" were
both cremated and buried together. Approximately 300 people attended his service.
He is survived by his father Kevin;
mother Judith ( also known as Laura ); brothers Kevin and Kyle; and
dedicated a memorial to a fallen soldier on December 4, 2007. The 5th
Engineer Battalion named a 36-dog kennel and veterinary facility after Cpl. Kory Wiens
at Fort Leonard Wood. The
kennel is for the 94th Mine Dog Detachment based at the Fort.
The Kory Wiens Memorial Fund, set up by the Wiens family, is accepting
donations at Washington Federal Savings Bank. The money will be used to
customize Wiens’ 1972 Dodge “Swinger” and the vehicle will be used as a
memorial to Wiens and Cooper.
SSGT. Joshua Brandon Farnsworth
July 3, 2007 - Spokane, Washington - Age 32
Sergeant Joshua Brandon Farnsworth, 32, died on July 3, 2007 at his
SSGT. Joshua Farnsworth was found
deceased in is base house after they were sent to his home to determine
why he had missed guardmount.
SSGT Farnsworth was an explosive military working dog handler in the
United States Air Force at Fairchild AFB, Washington and also served in
the United States Marine Corps as Military Police at Camp Lejeune, North
Carolina and Okinawa, Japan. He was a
the 92nd Security Forces Squadron based at Fairchild Air Force Base.
He served overseas in Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Qutar, and
two tours in Iraq and received over a dozen awards. Josh's funeral
service was held at Fairchild Air Force Base. Josh is survived by his
wife, Laura Farnsworth of Spokane, Washington; his daughter Bryden
Farnsworth, of Bend, Oregon, and his military working K-9, Eesau.
June 11, 2007 - Llandrindod Wells, Whales - Age 38
Pc Lance Williams, 38, from
Llandrindod Wells, Powys, attacked his wife while off duty and then
committed suicide on June 11, 2007. Lance Williams flew into a rage
about the break up of his marrage to his wife, Wendy, 36, who he was
married to for nine years. At the time they were seperated for one month
and the two children, Elinor, 11, and Lewys, nine were living with
Wendy's mother. It was Wendy's birthday the day she arrived at his
home on Oxford Road, Llandrindod Wells, to collect their two
children. When Wendy arrived, Elinor opened the door and said Lewys was
finishing his tea. Wendy waited in the hall and saw Lance who told her
to get off his property. Lance Williams then grabbed Wendy by her wrist
and pushed her to the floor. He dragged his wife into the hallway and
punched and kicked her in the head before stabbing her in the chest and
hand with a kitchen knife in front of his 2 children, and then commited
suicide by hanging himself at approximately 5:00 p.m. Lance Williams had
stabbed himself in the chest before hanging himself from the attic hatch
at his modern detached house with his dog's choker and leash. Pc Lance
Williams worked as a dog handler for Dyfed-Powys Police.
Agent Richard Goldstein
May 11, 2007 - California - Age 37
Border Patrol Agent Richard Goldstein,
in the line of duty on May 11, 2007 in California. He was
reported missing around 3:30 p.m. and authorities began a search
for him soon after they realized he was away from his K-9 patrol
vehicle. A search
involving multiple local, state and federal agencies was immediately
initiated. They found his
dog "Carlo", all wet, along side of Agent
Goldstein's parked vehicle which was left idling in a remote area
next to the Coachella Canal. Markings in the area indicate the dog
had been in the water and struggled to get out of the canal.
was found almost
an hour later floating in seven feet of
Canal near Niland, east of the Salton Sea and about 40 miles
north of the U.S.-Mexico border.
It was not known how Goldstein ended up in the
canal. Early reports indicate Agent Goldstein entered the canal in
order to rescue his K-9 partner.
A search by California Highway Patrol and Border Patrol helicopters
did not locate other vehicles that might have been involved in the
incident. Goldstein, a five-year veteran of
the Border Patrol assigned to the El Centro Sector's Indio Station.
Border Patrol agents
monitor the canal, which runs north to south, because smugglers of
drugs and people often drive on its narrow banks to bypass an
immigration checkpoint on Highway 111, several miles north of Niland.
The circumstances of his death are currently under investigation. An
autopsy completed revealed Goldstein died of an accidental drowning.
Goldstein was the first
agent to have drowned in the El Centro Sector's history. At his
service he received a 21-gun salute and a special fly-by with
helicopters in California and then buried in Lackawanna,
NY. Agent Goldstein is survived by his wife, Katherine,
two step-sons, David Knights and Jamie Swart.
Officer Robert W. Winget
April 10, 2007 - Ripon, California - Age 57
Officer Robert Winget
died on the morning of April 10, 2007 when he left for patrol from the
Ripon Police Department at 11:25 a.m. He was on patrol in south Ripon
near the banks of the Stanislaus River in the Ripon River Crossing area
on his all-terrain patrol vehicle. At 11:40 a.m. dispatchers received an
“undecipherable” transmission from Officer Winget. The Ripon Police
Department set up a Mobile Command Center and Fire, City Public Works
and citizens participated in the search to attempt to locate Officer
Winget. At approximately 1:14 p.m., a Ripon Consolidated Fire District
search crew located him unconscious along the river area, west of
Highway 99. Immediately C.P.R. was administered and a 4-wheel drive
rescue vehicle removed him from the area and was transported by the
Ripon Fire District Ambulance to Doctor’s Hospital in Modesto, where he
was pronounced dead at approximately 2:27 p.m. from traumatic injuries
associated with the crash of his all-terrain vehicle. Winget was a US
Marine who served in Viet Nam. His career in law enforcement was
thirty-seven years. Officer Winget served with the Los Angeles Police
Department for 20 years and the Stanislaus County Sheriff's Department
for 14 years where he was a longtime Drug Abuse Resistance Education
officer. The past three years he served Ripon Police Department
patrolling with his narcotic K-9 partner “Topper” in an
all-terrain patrol vehicle. Approximately 1,000 uniformed officers from
around the state attended the funeral service at First Baptist Church in
Modesto. Hundreds of citizens lined the streets of Ripon and Modesto to
pay their respects as the funeral procession traveled to Burwood
cemetery, where he was laid to rest. Among those paying respects were
California Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr., and a spokesman for
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. Approximately 20 canine officers and
their K9'S attended the service. Officer Bob Winget is survived by his
wife of 33 years, Chris; daughters Ashley, 22, Kelley, 19, Bonnie, 16;
and son, Edward Amey, 36.
trust fund has been established to help Winget's family, law enforcement
officials said. Donations can be made to Bank of Stockton, 234 W. Main
St., Ripon 95366.
Dustin Jerome Lee
March 21, 2007 - Fallujah, Iraq - Age 20
Click on link below for
Marine Cpl. Dustin Lee's
Marine Cpl. Dustin
Jerome Lee, 20, a Marine K9 handler,
was killed on March 21, 2007
while conducting combat operations in Fallujah, Iraq,
just six weeks before he was expected to return home. Dustin
Lee died of injuries suffered in a mortor attack when shrapnel hit him
in the chest and was medi-vaced out to an area hospital where he died a
short time later. Lee was assigned to Headquarters Battalion,
Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, GA.
before deploying for Iraq. His dog Lex received injuries but non
life-threatening. K9 "Lex" was sent back to the U.S. to attended his
handlers funeral on March 31, 2007. Dusty's family is in the process of adopting Lex. Dustin
was born in Meridian, Mississippi, graduated from Quitman High School in
2004. Dustin's father, Jerome Lee
has been a trooper for Troop H of the Mississippi Highway Patrol since
include his parents, Jerome and Rachel Rich Lee, younger brother Camryn
Matthew Lee, and sister Madyson Taylor Lee.
Donations may be made to any
Bank Plus Branch, Jerome or Rachel Lee, Corporal Dustin Jerome Lee
family lobbied the military for months to allow it to adopt Lex. K9
Lex who was wounded in an explosion that killed his Marine handler
was released from duty so it could be adopted by the slain Marine's
family on December 21, 2007 exactly nine months after Lee was
killed. The adoption of the 8-year-old German shepherd, Lex, by the
family of fallen Marine Cpl. Dustin Jerome Lee marks the first time
the U.S. military has granted early retirement to a working dog so
it could live with a former handler's family. Though some shrapnel
remains lodged in his back, Lex has otherwise recovered from his
wounds and had been serving alongside military policemen at the
Albany base since July. Canine
Lex received a commemorative Purple Heart medal on February 16,
2008 at the Air Force Armament Museum in Florida.
K9 Lex died March 25,
and had been undergoing treatment at the Mississippi State
University veterinary school.
Phillip Michael Deese
March 9, 2007 - Harleyville, South Carolina - Age 38
Corporal Phillip Michael
Deese, 38, was on patrol when an eastbound pickup truck crossed the
median of I-26 near the Harleyville exit and slammed into his cruiser
head on at
5:20 p.m. Deese and the driver of the pickup, 53-year-old Christopher
Burnham Junior of Summerville, both died instantly. Deese's patrol dog,
Sonja, was in the back of his cruiser and also died. The accident caused
a chain reaction that involved three other vehicles in the wreck but no
one in the other cars were seriously injured. One, a 2006 Sebring, was
driven by Desmona Brown, 27, of Johns Island, who was transported to
Trident Regional Medical Center in North Charleston. The fourth vehicle
was a 2003 silver Mutsibishi driven by Ashley Grimsburg, 20, of Rock Hill.
She has two passengers with minor injures. The fifth vehicle was a
2005 Saturn, driven by a 23-year-old, who was not injured. Deese had been a
Dorchester County deputy since May 2001 and was named Deputy of the Year
by the South Carolina Sheriff's Association after he and a different
police dog, K-9 "Bailey" were both shot during a domestic violence call
on April 6, 2003. Deese
stopped after he was flagged down by a woman, Ashley Phillips,35, of 105 Monarch Drive who said her husband,
Timothy Matthew Phillips, 41, had a
loaded shotgun. While he talked to her, her husband emerged from some bushes
and started firing wounding Deputy Deese in the face, shoulder and
chest but Deputy Deese was able to shoot back from his cruiser. Deese returned fire while he
called for backup and an ambulance and reversed his car away from the
shooter. Phillips continued shooting into the police vehicle as it
backed away, hitting Deese's K-9 partner Bailey.
Officer J. Dandridge arrived on the scene, helped Deese into the back of
his patrol car and left the scene. He met the responding ambulance on
Tupperway Drive and then transferred the deputy into the ambulance.
Assessing wounds in the deputy's arm, face, shoulder and chest, EMS
personnel asked Officer Dandridge to drive the ambulance so that they
could begin to treat Deese.
Deese had more than 100
pellets lodged in his arm and was looking at more surgery to remove them
as they work their way out of his skin. Phillips was arrested at the
scene as more than 20 units from various agencies arrived as backup. He
was charged with criminal domestic violence, high and aggravated assault
and battery with intent to kill, possession of a weapon in commission of
a violent crime and malicious injury to a police dog. A jury found
Phillips guilty of assault and battery with intent to kill, malicious
injury to a police dog and the possession of a firearm during the
commission of a violent crime. Phillips was sentenced to five years on
the weapons charge, three years and a $2,000 fine for injuring the K-9
and 15 years for the assault on Deputy Deese, all to run concurrently.
K-9 Bailey was retired and became a pet in the Deese household.
Deese was both
the recipient of a medal of valor and a deputy of the year honor.
the first time in the history of the organization that one deputy
received both honors. Corporal Deese served on the law enforcement agency's Special
Response Team and also the honor guard. At the request of the family,
K-9 "Sonja" will be buried with Corporal Deese. Approximately
60 police K-9'S attended his funeral. He is survived by his wife
daughter Caley Lydia age 3, and two
step-children, Brittani and Avery. A memorial fund has been established to help the Deese
family and donations can be sent to Dorchester County Sheriff Office
Memorial Fund, 212 Deming Way, Summerville, SC 29483.
January 11, 2007 - Hope Mills, North Carolina - Age 35
On 1/11/07 just before 10 a.m., police were called to
Murphy Oil USA on Hope Mills Road to look into a report of someone
The person, who police say
was Ricky Allen Wilson Jr., 23, left the convenience store and was
later seen in a van by field training officer. The field training
officer recognized Wilson as being wanted on a previous warrant that
involved unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. A passenger in Wilson’s
vehicle was caught, but Wilson got away. Wilson was spotted in the
afternoon by a sheriff’s deputy along Cameron Road and U.S. 301 and fled
into a wooded area.
Sergeant James Hardin and his K9 partner searched
45 minutes and
2 to 2 miles into the woods for
Wilson who had fled from officers on foot.
They approached a 6-foot
fence the dog could not cross and were huddled to regroup when Hardin
collapsed and died from a fatal heart attack.
Hardin was rushed to Cape Fear Valley
Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
Ricky Allen Wilson was caught about 5:15
p.m. on Perch Drive in Fayetteville.
Hardin was in
excellent shape and had passed a physical exam more than a month ago.
Sergeant Hardin had served with the
Hope Mills Police Department for 9 years and
was Police Officer of the
Year in 2000 for the Town of Hope Mills. Hardin
completed basic law enforcement training at Sampson Community College in
May 1997. He became a patrol officer with the Hope Mills Police
Department in August 1997. He worked his way up from officer to shift
supervisor and to corporal in September 2004. On July 14, 2006, Hardin
was promoted to sergeant.
is a Lumbee Native American Indian who was a ceremonial dancer and
performed at many powwows. Hardin served as head dancer, one of the
highest honors for a dancer, on several occasions at powwows.
He was one of the young fancy
Native dancers who went to Europe to participate in the Carnivale in
and partially responsible for the US bringing home the 1st place
trophy. A memorial
fund has been set up at First Citizens Bank. Donations may be directed
to The Heath Hardin Memorial Fund, c/o First Citizens Bank, 3626 N. Main
St., Hope Mills, N.C. 28348. Hardin is survived by
his wife, Shelly C. Hardin; daughter, Samantha
Yvette Hardin; and son,
James Mason Hardin.
Ricky Allen Wilson Jr., 23,
charged with felony fleeing to elude arrest, driving with a revoked
license, larceny of fuel, misdemeanor possession of stolen goods,
driving with a fictitious or revoked registration plate, reckless
driving to endanger and being the driver in a hit-and-run and failing to
stop for property damage. He previously was wanted in an attempted
break-in of a house. His total bail was set at $2,500.
Robert V. Fumiatti
January 10, 2007 - New Haven, Connecticut,- Age 35
2002, Officer Robert Fumiatti, along with about 10
officers had just finished a drug raid in another section of New Haven
when they drove up to Washington and West streets in an unmarked van.
They spotted what they thought was a hand-to-hand drug deal and stopped
the vehicle. Fumiatti was the first officer out. He was shot before he
could draw his gun at 9:15 p.m. Arnold Bell, 36, shot Officer
Fumiatti with a 38 caliber Colt Cobra revolver and then fled from
police. Fumiatti's heart stopped and was
restarted in the ambulance on the way to the emergency room at Yale-New
Haven Hospital and arrived there at 9:25 p.m. He was dead for 3 minutes
and 43 seconds. The single bullet entered Fumiatti's right cheek about
level with the bottom of his ear and ricocheted downward off a molar,
ripping through the esophagus and cracking his top vertebra in officer's
bullet, which was never removed, caused partial paralysis to his arm. Up to 100 officers
quickly converged on the scene in a massive manhunt for the shooter and
cordoned off a nearly six-block area as they search yard by yard with
shepherds and a blood hound along with state police helicopters.
A police SWAT team found
Bell hiding under a bush in a yard 50 yards from family members at
approximately 2 a.m.
and arrested him after a four -and-a-half hour search through
neighborhood. Superior Court Judge
set bail at 5 million after Arnold Bell
was arrested. For weeks Fumiatti was in critical condition. He had
to wear a halo brace for 4 1/2 months bolted to his head for the
resulting cervical fracture. He spent a month in the hospital and
suffered partial paralysis of one arm for months and spent a year in
intense physical therapy. He had frequent visits to his physicians to
keep track of a pacemaker he was given to help him recover with his injuries. At the
time of the incident, Fumiatti was a three and a half year veteran of
the New Haven Police Department and was assigned to the patrol unit. After Robert Fumiatti was shot in the face he was out of work for 18 months and then
returned to work in January 26, 2004 as a K-9 Handler after intensive rehab,
even though a bullet remained lodged near his spine.
He was later diagnosed with
post-traumatic stress disorder and suffered several setbacks that put
him on leave for awhile. Fumiatti’s father, Vin,
retired in 1994 as a detective
from the New Haven Police Department. On September
14, 2004 Robert was awarded the purple heart by New Haven officials. On
January 10, 2007 Officer Robert Fumiatti died of
natural causes related to
cardiac sarcoidosis an autopsy showed.
Officer Fumiatti was buried with his badge, # 24, the same badge worn by his
father and now that badge number will be retired and never worn again.
Approximately one thousand mourners attended his funeral along with
dozens of police canines.
survived by his wife Stacey and their three children, Madelyn 7, Caitlyn
3 and Vinnie 2. His
K-9 narcotic dog is "Major".
Nearly five years of appealing the
federal decision, the Fumiatti family convinced the courts that Robert
did ultimately die in the line of duty and his name was finally added to
the National Law Enforcement Officer's Memorial wall in Washington, D.C.
On June 15, 2002, Michael Rice, 37, of
Milford, was arrested in connection with the shooting He was accused of
providing the .38-caliber gun used to wound Officer Robert Fumiatti
during a drug raid who was later released on bond. The police earlier
arrested Arnold Bell, 36, charging him with attempted murder and assault
on a police officer. In February 2003, Gary Mills, 40, of New Haven,
Connecticut, was indicted by a federal grand jury in February 2003 in
connection with the possession of a .38 caliber Colt Cobra revolver. He
pleaded guilty to being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm
that had traveled in interstate commerce as evidence was about to begin
in his jury trial in New Haven federal court. Documents filed with the
Court, in December 2001, reveal that a crack-addicted individual gave
Mills the .38 caliber revolver in connection with a drug transaction.
Specifically, Mills took the gun and provided the addict with a quantity
of crack cocaine. The record in the case reflects that Mills maintained
possession of the weapon until February 2002, when he transferred the
gun to Arnold Bell of New Haven. Several months later, on June 13, 2002,
Bell shot New Haven police officer Robert Fumiatti in the face with the
weapon. On June 14, 2002, Bell was found in a yard at 2:00 a.m. after a
short manhunt and a judge set the bond for $ 5 million. The gun was
recovered at the scene of the officer’s shooting. Court records reflect
that, prior to December 2001, Mills had been convicted of numerous
felony offenses. As a result of his prior record, Mills faces the
enhanced sentencing penalties applicable under the federal Armed Career
Criminal Act. At that time, Mills faces a mandatory minimum term of 15
years of imprisonment and a maximum term of life. On
April 6, 2004, a jury of four men and two
women deliberated for about a day before finding Arnold Bell, 38, guilty
of first-degree assault, carrying a pistol without a permit and criminal
possession of a firearm. Bell also has been
convicted of a federal firearms charge related to the shooting, and had
an extensive criminal history. At the time of the shooting
Police found three latex
gloves, including one that was caught in a gun, near the site of the
shooting. Two of the gloves, with Bells palm prints inside, were found
near a home owned by Bell's father.
On June 4, 2004, Superior Court Judge Robert Devlin Jr.
imposed a sentence for Arnold Bell of 45 years. The state is now looking
into charging Arnold Bell with
Murder. Bell has
prior convictions going back to 1982.
first jailed Dec. 6, 1982, at age 16, when he was taken to the New Haven
Correctional Center on charges of second-degree and third-degree
robbery, according to state records. He was discharged after posting
$25,000 bail that same day. Bell was readmitted to the same jail Jan.
3, 1983 on the robbery charges and discharged Jan. 12, 1983. In the
years that followed, Bell was arrested on a series of larceny charges as
well as first-degree robbery and violation of probation. Bell was
incarcerated at the Manson Youth Institute in Cheshire from Sept. 18,
1984 to March 31, 1985. In July 1985 Bell was again arrested, this time
for breach of peace and carrying a pistol without a permit. He served
time in several correctional centers until being discharged in June
1986. Bell got into further trouble with the law in February 1988 when
he was arrested on charges of first-degree and third-degree assault. He
was in prison from April 28, 1988 to May 26, 1988, when he was released
to a community residence. But in September 1988 Bell was arrested on
charges of selling narcotics and possessing narcotics with intent to
sell. He was in prison on state charges from March 1989 to December
1995, but was retained in custody after that because of a federal
charge: being a felon in possession of a firearm. Bell had been on
prison furlough Jan. 14, 1994, when New Haven police caught him with a
9-mm assault weapon. The gun also appeared to have been stolen,
officials said, because its serial number had been obliterated. In
August 1996 state prison officials turned Bell over to federal
authorities and he began serving his federal sentence in New York and
New Jersey prisons.
Gary Mills pleaded guilty in
October 2006 to being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. Gary
Mills was sentenced on January 22, 2007 to 15 years and eight months in
prison for possessing a gun to shoot Officer Robert Fumiatti.
October 31, 2006 - Israel,- Age 21
Staff Sergeant Kiril
Golenshein, 21, of Moshav Shekef, was killed by a sniper's bullet as his
unit entered the town of Beit Hanun in the Gaza Strip in pursuit of
terrorists firing Kassam rockets at Israel. Golenshein was a member of
the IDF's elite Oketz (Sting) canine unit. Sgt.
Golenshin and his German Shepherd "Mako" were at the spearhead of the
IDF's nightly war against Palestinian terror. Golenshin was at the front
of the force when he was shot in the leg while leading the charge on a
house in Beit Hanoun. As an only child, Kiril could have opted for a
non-combat position during his service, but he insisted on combat. He
died one week before he was to begin a commanders' course.
St.-Sgt. Kiril Golenshein was
buried at Jerusalem's Mount Herzl Military Cemetery.
Thomas T. Wood
October 23, 2006 - Maywood, Illinois,- Age 37
Officer Thomas Wood, 37,
was shot and killed on 10/23/06
while sitting in his police patrol car
with his window rolled down
and his truck in park
in the suburban village of
Wood was found shot
once in the back of the
head, twice in the side of the head and once in the chest,
and slumped over the steering wheel of
his police-issued SUV at 11:17 p.m. When he was found his SUV had the
drivers side window down, vehicle in park with the engine running and
his weapon and wallet were still on him. He was
pronounced dead at 11:43 p.m. at the
nearby Loyola University Medical Center. Wood
was a seven-year department veteran and served as a K-9 officer for the
past 2 ½ years and
is the first
on-duty slaying of a police officer in the department's history.
The shooting happened near 6th Avenue and Erie Street.
Wood worked the 3 p.m.-to-midnight shift for the police department and
was on his last call of the night when the shooting occurred. Wood's canine partner "Daro", a malinois
shepherd, was in the police car during the shooting but was not injured. Wood
was shot after notifying dispatchers that a drug trafficking call he
investigated was unfounded. Officer
Wood also worked as a part-time security officer at Proviso East High
School in Maywood and at a Target store in Broadview. Before joining
the Maywood Police Department,
Wood was a reserve
officer with the Schiller Park Police Department from 1992 to 1996 and
worked part time for the Stone Park Police Department from 1995 to 1997.
He joined the Maywood force in 1999.
Officer Wood is survived by his wife Helene, 36, and five children
ranging in age from 8 to 16 years old. (
Nicholas, Alyssa, Kyle,
Devin, Savannah )
Wood and his wife, Helene, were
married for eight years and had two children together — a 6-year-old
girl and a 7-year-old boy. He also helped raise three other children
from his wife's previous marriage.
1,500 mourners attended the funeral service along with about 20 K-9
The suspect fled the scene and
remains at large. Maywood investigators asked the public for help
finding the shooter. Those with information have been asked to call the
Maywood Police Department at 708-450-4409 or
reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest and
conviction of the killer of Maywood Police Officer Thomas Wood.
The reward is sponsored by Aftermath Inc., a
company that specializes in crime-scene cleanups. On November 8, 2006
the $10,000 reward was increased to $30,000 for information leading to
the arrest and conviction of the killing of Officer Thomas Wood. The
increase in the award was due to police agencies around the region that
donated approximately $10,000, the village of Maywood contributed
approximately $10,000 along with $10,000 contributed by Aftermath who
put up the initial reward money. Also on November 8, 2006 at a village
board meeting an ordinance to retire Wood's German shepherd "Daro" was
approved. The ownership of the dog will be transferred to the Wood
family because the dog would be useful to the department for
about one more year and the
dog would be more comfortable living with the family.
On November 16, 2006 the award money
was increased again from $30,00 to $100,000 when an anonymous donor
The F.B.I. joined in with the investigation on January 15, 2008 and is
asking anyone with any information about the slaying to call the
F.B.I.'S Chicago office at 312-421-6700.
fund has been established at 1st Suburban National Bank, 150 S. 5th Avenue,
Maywood, Illinois 60153. Donations
may be made to Thomas T.
Wood Children's Trust Fund. The bank can be reached at 708-450-4100.
October 21, 2006 - Oxford, Mississippi- Age 30
Funeral ( click on
link below )
Canine Officer, Robert
Langley, 30, of Oxford died on 10/21/06 during a motor vehicle stop
involving a student of the University of Mississippi. Officer
Michelle Thompson and Officer Robert Langley were setting up to catch
speeders on campus. Officer Langley radioed Officer Thompson that he had
clocked a black Ford F-150 doing 40 in an 18 mph zone. Officer Thompson
had stopped Daniel Reed Cummings, 20, a second-year sophomore liberal
arts major student, about 2 a.m. for speeding westbound on Fraternity
Row. The driver, stopped on Jackson Avenue and Officer Thompson
approached the vehicle and asked for his drivers license. Officer
Langley approached from the other side and began looking with a
flashlight in the truck cab. Cummings handed over his drivers license
while Officer Thompson continued to talk to him. Officer Thompson asked
Cummings for his proof of insurance. He opened the truck's door and
stood out, then reached as though he was reaching for the glove
compartment, jumped in the truck quickly pulling away. Officer Langley
reached into the truck while Cummings drove off down Jackson Street with
Langley running beside the truck. Langley attempted to hold on as the
truck approached the intersection of Jackson and Hathorn streets as the
truck accelerated and swerved dragging
Officer Langley about 200 yards. Langley suffered severe head injuries
and was taken by helicopter to Regional Medical Center in Memphis, where
he was pronounced dead about 11 a.m. Langley, a four-year veteran of the
30-officer department, also served in the Mississippi Army National
Guard and recently became a canine officer and certified his police K9 “Truus”.
He returned in April after a tour in Afghanistan as a field artillery
man with the Guard's 1st Battalion of the 114th Artillery. and is the first University of Mississippi officer killed in the
line of duty. Langley was a 4-year veteran of the University Police
Department. Oxford police found the vehicle in town about 20 minutes
later and soon after found Cummings a couple of miles away at his
off-campus apartment. Langley is
survived by wife, Lisa, two sons and two stepdaughters.
About 1,000 people attended the funeral of Robert Langley
with full military honors.
During the full military
honor, a bugler sounded “Taps,” a bagpiper played “Amazing Grace,” an
honor guard offered a 21-gun salute, and a brace of helicopters from the
DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office performed a flyover of the site. Officer
Langley received the Army Commendation Medal, Global War on Terrorism
Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Overseas Service Ribbon
and the Mississippi War Medal. During a football game on October 28,
2006 at the University
of Mississippi's Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, students passed around
buckets for contributions to the 55,000 football fans and collected
$114,730.69 for the Robert Langley Children's Fund. Contributions to the
children's funds can be sent to Kristy Cohron at M & F Bank, 1111
Jackson Avenue, Oxford, MS. Family and friends also have
established the Robert Langley Memorial Scholarship Endowment to provide
scholarships for Ole Miss criminal justice majors and gifts to that fund
can be sent to the University of Mississippi Foundation, P.O. Box 249,
University, MS 38677. Contributions can also be made online at
Daniel Reed Cummings, who is from
Germantown, Tenn., has been charged with capital murder. He was being
held without bond in the Lafayette County Detention Center. If
convicted, Cummings could face the death penalty for capital murder of a
police officer. A background check by the Tennessee Bureau of
Investigations revealed that a man by the same name and address as
Cummings had been arrested twice in that state for vandalism. and cited
for speeding in a school zone. The vandalism arrests were made on June
1, 2005 and March 31, 2005, and expunged from the record in July,
officials said. There was a probationary period, and at the end of that
period parts of that probation were met and a judge signed off on it.
During the bond hearing on November 8, 2006, prosecutors
say in a motion that
Cummings tested positive for alcohol, cocaine and marijuana in his
system the morning Robert Langley was killed and requested a
The lead prosecutor announced on November 20, 2006 that the state will
not seek the death penalty against Daniel Reed Cummings.
A conviction could result in
life in prison without parole or life in prison with possibility of
A hearing has been reset for November 29, 2006
and Daniel Cummings was denied bond.
On October 15, 2007, Daniel
Reed Cummings was sentenced to 20 years in prison under a plea agreement
reached on the weekend before his trial with prosecutors and Langley's
widow, Lisa, and the officer's parents. The plea was made before
Lafayette County Circuit Court Judge Andrew Howorth. The court accepted
the prosecutors recommendation that Cummings also be ordered to pay
court costs and he will receive credit for the year he has already spent
in the Lafayette County Detention Center and will be required to serve
85 percent of his sentence which would be 17 years. After his guilty plea, Cummings wanted
to address Langley's widow, but she indicated that she did not want to
hear from him.
Deputy Vernon Matthew "Matt" Williams
September 28, 2006 - Lakeland, Florida,- Age 39
Deputy Matt Williams
Sheriff Deputy, Vernon Matthew "Matt" Williams, 39, was shot and killed
along with his K-9 Diogi on 9/28/06. The incident started at 11:45 a.m.
during a routine traffic stop for speeding near North Wabash Avenue and
West 10th Street in Lakeland, Florida. He stopped
a silver Dodge Stratus with
a Kentucky license plates that zoomed by doing 53 mph in a 35-mph zone.
Deputy Douglas Speirs, 39, who
made the traffic stop was asked by the suspect if he was going to jail
and the deputy replied that he didn't know.
He claimed to be Eswardo
Ramclaim. He said he had left his Florida identification card at home in
Orlando. He told Speirs he didn't have a driver license and didn't know
his Social Security number. Freeland asked whether he was going to
jail. "It's not common practice if it's just a simple misdemeanor of no
driver's license," Speirs told him. The deputy indicated he was going to
try to search for "Eswardo Ramclaim" on his cruiser's computer. Eswardo
Ramclain was an alias for Freeman. He was told to use his cell phone to
arrange for someone to pick him up because he wouldn't be able to drive
the car farther without a license. Spiers went back to his vehicle and
was watching him in his side view mirror and noticed his eyes locked on
him and not dialing his cell phone. Spiers
find any record of the name on the card.
Suddenly Freeland ,
jumped out and ran into the woods. Spiers chased him for about 100 yards
then called for backup.
Matt Williams, arrived
to provide backup with his K-9 German shepherd “Doigi” who he was
partnered with since 2000. The suspect then fled into a wooded area
nearby, pursued by the two deputies and K-9 Doigi who went into the
woods approximately 300 feet. At 12:30 p.m., numerous shots were fired
took cover, then went toward the gunshots. He saw the suspect and
returned fire. The suspect disappeared again before popping back up and
shooting Spiers. Sheriff Deputy Williams and his K-9 Doigi were shot and
killed instantly. Deputy Douglas Speirs, who is married and has two
sons, was shot in the leg and treated and released later that day from
Lakeland Regional Medical Center.
The suspect later exchanged gunfire about 20 minutes later
Lakeland Police Detective Jeff Birdwell and Officer Jose Bosque when
they pulled into Paul Prebor's driveway at 1446 N. Wabash Avenue
to warn residents to stay inside.
said they asked him whether the man in the back yard had any business
being there. When Prebor said no, the man, instead of running, came
toward the three men and shot at least twice, Prebor said. He said
Birdwell shot back twice as the gunman disappeared. Two shots hit an
overhang on a utility room.
one was hit. After the suspect fled into the woods they found
a book detailing his drug
in the vehicle. Deputy Williams had been with the sheriff's office since
April 1994 and prior to that he was a correctional officer at the
state prison in Polk City.
Post mortem results released showed
Williams was shot eight times - one bullet fired at close range behind
the deputy's right ear and another in his right temple, right leg, right
wrist, upper right arm, right buttocks and spine, left bicep and rear
left thigh. Williams was not wearing a protective vest at the
time. His K-9 partner "Doigi" was shot once in the chest.
Williams died on his wife's 40th birthday. Two
days before his death, Matt Williams ordered an ice cream cake -- with
Oreo cookies, cherries and chocolate drizzle -- for his wife's 40th
birthday which was going to be celebrated with the cake he was going to
pick up the day he died and never got the chance to pick the birthday
cake up . During Williams' funeral service,
casket was moved into the Victory Church while his patrol car sat
Williams' retired canine deputy,
attended the service. During the service a slideshow showed candid
photos of Williams with his family and his police dog Diogi
Richie's "Endless Love" and Bob Carlisle's "Butterfly Kisses" played
during interludes between eulogies. The funeral service was to be held
at 1:00 p.m. but because of such a heavy turn out the service at the
cemetery was almost 7:00 p.m. It took more than 2 hours for the funeral
procession to travel 12 miles from the church to the cemetery. More than
200 police dogs attended the funeral. Nineteen police helicopters flew a
missing man formation over the service, one helicopter peeling off to
signify the slain deputy.
nameplates were fastened on the lid of the casket, the first one said,
"Vernon Matt Williams, 1967-2006." The second said, "Diogi, 2003-2006." More than 5,000 people attended the memorial
the bagpipers played "Amazing Grace" and a traditional Scottish song
called "Going Home."
The ceremonies ended at the
gravesite, when a dispatcher called out his name two times, and then his
badge number 3655K was retired forever. Williams K-9 partner, Diogi, was cremated and the dog's remains
placed with Deputy Williams
be buried together at the
Auburndale Memorial Cemetery and to this day remains the largest funeral
attendance for a canine officer.
Vernon Matthew Williams leaves a wife, Nancy Jean
three children --
16-year-old twins, Jimmy Allen Williams and Amanda Rochelle Williams, and son Christopher
Matthew Williams, 19.
Since the death
of Officer Williams and his K9 partner "Diogi", business leaders in the
community have been very gracious and continue to provide financial
support for his family. A motorcycle poker run, raised $57,000 for the
family and a golf tournament raised $56,000 for the family.
October 2006 benefit dinner raised $4,500 for the family.
An anonymous donor
donated a new Ford Escape to the family. Wal-Mart Foundation donated
$750 to Williams' widow, Nancy Williams and their three children.
About $50,000 has also been
donated to the Sheriff's Office toward the purchase of new K-9s; several
dogs have already been bought and are in training.
trust fund has been set up at Wachovia Bank to assist Williams' widow
and three children. Any Wachovia branch in Polk County will accept
donations, or checks may be mailed to the "Matt Williams Family Trust
Fund" at Wachovia Bank, c/o Marilyn Watson, 203 Ave. A, Winter Haven, FL
they were looking for was a black man with dreadlocks and was about 6 feet
tall wearing a white or khaki shirt and dark pants and speaks with a
Jamaican accent. A $ 40,000 reward was being offered for information
leading to the gunman's arrest.
Officers had used
night-vision scopes, tracking dogs, helicopters, thermal imaging and
door-to-door searches to try to locate the suspect. SWAT team
members shot a man at approximately 9:35 a.m. on 9/29/06 suspected of killing a sheriff's deputy
approximately 22 hours earlier, ending an intensive manhunt that had
gripped the rural area and included over 500 police. The suspect,
Angilo Freeland,27, was shot numerous times after he
was found in thick brush, just 75 yards away from where Deputy Vernon
Matthew Williams was killed in Thursday's burst of gunfire. The suspect
had dug under a fallen oak tree and covered himself with brush The
suspect refused to show both of his hands when officers commanded him
to and officers opened fire after seeing that he appeared to have
Williams' .45-caliber weapon. It was unclear if the man also fired the
gun. In addition to the deputy's handgun, the suspect was also carrying
his own gun,
A 9-mm Taurus pistol
-- one that sources said he carried in his belt
one of the pockets of his cargo pants was a magazine of ammunition taken
Robert Miller, from
about three yards away, fired a shotgun
at Freeland's face. After
shooting, Miller jumped back, falling onto his backside, causing other
officers to think he had been shot. A cascade of fire ensued, killing
Freeland. The officers, most of them firing automatic weapons.
A 10 member SWAT team, in which 9 members fired 110 shots at Angilo Freeland, 68 hitting him according to
post mortem results.
Freeland was hit numerous
times: 11 shots to his torso and 56 to his arms and legs. One shot
struck under Freeland's left eye. Investigators recovered the
silver-colored handgun between Freeland's legs. It was identified as
Williams' missing .45-caliber Smith & Wesson semiautomatic pistol. The
weapon was ready to fire with eight shots. Williams' spare magazines
were in Freeland's pockets with an additional nine rounds of ammunition.
Investigators don't know whether Speirs accidentally hit Williams' body
during his exchange of gunfire with Freeland. Two loose bullets were
found at the hospital. One was loose in Williams' right pant leg and
another on a gurney near Williams' waist area.
Testing showed these bullets
were fired from Speirs' pistol. Speirs acted appropriately that day and
was cleared in his use of deadly force against Freeland.
had been arrested by the Florida Highway Patrol on April 24, 1999 when
Trooper Helen McCoy pulled over a Ford
truck for speeding on West Highland Street, about 2.5 miles away from
where Deputy Williams was fatally shot. The driver stuck his hands out
the window, but pulled them back inside and was making some suspicious
movements in the vehicle as Trooper Helen McCoy approached the
arrest report states. The driver refused orders for him to show his
hands and sped away with troopers in pursuit, an arrest report states.
The driver later abandoned the truck and ran away. Troopers searched the
truck and found a .380-caliber handgun in the center console "with a
round in the chamber and safety off." They also discovered a pawn shop
receipt for a "Russian SKS rifle" that included an address for 2415 W.
Cannon St., according to a defense motion to suppress. It is unclear
whether the pawn ticket was for dropping off or picking up the assault
rifle. Troopers went to the West Cannon Street house, where Freeland was
arrested after McCoy identified him as the driver of the truck. He was
not having a valid drivers license, reckless driving, aggravated fleeing
to elude, resisting arrest without violence and carrying a concealed
Prosecutors elected May 27, 1999, not to file a charge of carrying a
concealed firearm against Freeland. He remained free on $2,000 bail but
failed to show up for a Nov. 16, 1999 court date, court records show.
Court records show he barricaded himself in his home
and disappeared before his
trial could begin. Prosecutors dropped his case after a warrant for
his arrest was issued but sat unserved until March 2005.
Freeland's charges were dropped by the prosecutors on March 7,
Records also show
Freeland may have lived on St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. St.
Thomas police said a man by that name and age was arrested on the island. Authorities
said he used several aliases, including Alex or
On June 5, 2008, the U.S.
Department of Justice cleared the Polk County Sheriff's Office of any
wrongdoing in the fatal shooting of Angilo Freeland.
After careful consideration the U.S. Department of Justice concluded
that the evidence didn't establish a prosecutable violation of the
federal civil rights statutes and closed their investigation.
Michael D. Thomas
September 20, 2006 - Aurora, Colorado- Age 52
Michael D. Thomas, 52, was
shot to death on 9/20/06 by a man they who was already being sought in
a random shooting in Denver two days earlier. Thomas was on a lunch break during a daylong
training exercise when he was shot in the left side while waiting for
the light to change on Peoria Street at Montview Boulevard. It wasn't
clear whether the suspect realized that Thomas was a police officer.
Thomas was on duty at the time but wearing civilian clothes in his own
corrections officers, George Kessler and Jason Mayfield, who were
returning from lunch to a training facility came upon the scene when the shooting occurred
and scrambled out of their van and tackled the suspect , whom police
identified as Brian Allen Washington, 27, of Denver. While the two
correction officers were scuffling with the suspect, a good samaritan,
Paul Brandin, 51, who was driving through the intersection stopped his
vehicle and saw the suspect drop a gun and kicked it to a safe spot
underneath a car where no one could get it. Washington is being
held without bail in Adams County Jail on investigation of first-degree
homicide. Paramedics rushed Thomas to University of Colorado Hospital
in Denver, where he was pronounced dead at 12:35 p.m. Michael
Thomas after graduating from Hinkley High School in 1972, joined the Air
Force to become an F-16 jet mechanic.
He left the
service in 1982 and a $70,000 job with the Air Force Thunderbirds
to work with the Aurora Police Department for less than $20,000 because he wanted to become a police officer
and help people.
Thomas served as
a patrolman, a canine officer and a narcotics detective. He had been
promoted to detective in April 2005 and recently was assigned to
District 3 in southeast Aurora. During his career, Thomas had been
decorated more than a dozen times, including a 1992 Medal of Honor, the
department's highest award.
Thomas had served with the Aurora Police Department for 24 years and is
survived by his 27 year old daughter, Nicole Bantau.
His K-9 partner was "Hutch".
Over 7,000 people attended Detective Thomas's funeral.
As many as 1,000 uniformed officers and deputies, including many from
other states were at the service to pay tribute to Thomas. People lined
the streets as the funeral procession of 750 police cars followed the hearse as it passed under a giant American flag held up by fire truck
Detective Thomas was
remembered with a special ceremony by releasing 21 white doves to honor
all police officers, then 3 doves were let go to honor the other three
Aurora officers killed in the line of duty, and then a final dove in
honor of Detective Michael Thomas.
Allen Washington has a lengthy adult arrest
history going back to January 1999 for speeding in Douglas County. He
also had traffic citations for not having insurance and driving without
a license in 1999. In November 1999 he was arrested in Aurora for
possession of less than an ounce of marijuana. He pleaded guilty and was
ordered to pay a fine of about $200.00. In 2001, Denver Police found a
bag of what they suspected was crack cocaine and a bag of marijuana in
his car, and he was charged with unlawful possession of a controlled
substance. Later that year Washington pleaded guilty to possession of
Valium and was sentenced to a two-year deferred judgment with supervised
probation. Washington failed drug tests for marijuana or failed to
show up for drug tests at least eight times. In 2003 Washington was
sentenced to two years in prison because of violations. Washington was
arrested in January of 2006 in Adams County on charges of possession of
marijuana and driving with a revoked license. He was wanted on a warrant
for failure to appear in court on those charges when he was stopped in
August of 2006 in Denver. Officers found a large bag of marijuana
between the passenger seat and passenger door and a search of the car
also turned up a loaded 9 mm handgun under the passenger seat. Three
days later, Washington faced two felony charges and a $25,000 bond,
court records show. By the end of the day, the felonies had been dropped
by the Denver District Attorney's Office and Washington had been
released after plea - bargaining four old traffic violations which he
had previously failed to appear in court. Washington agreed to a plea
bargain that gave him 180 days in jail - although 135 of those were
suspended and 40 were to be spent on home detention. He served
five days. Washington still hadn't gone on home detention because -
continuing a pattern - he failed to appear for his appointment with a
probation officer to be fitted with an ankle bracelet. Washington is
being held without bond and facing first degree murder in the connection
of Officer Thomas' death. Washington was charged on September 21, 2006
with 1st degree murder. On September 25, 2006 he was charged with
seven additional charges of
attempted first degree murder, attempted first degree assault, second
degree assault, felony menacing, possession of a weapon by a previous
offender and a crime of violence.
A preliminary hearing for Washington was set for Dec. 7, 2006.
Judge C. Vincent Phelps
ordered Washington to stand trial on seven charges for Thomas' death,
including a count of first-degree murder of a police officer which
the death penalty if he is convicted of first degree murder.
On January 10, 2007,
Washington pleaded not guilty by reason of insanity in Adams County
District Court for a previous shooting where he allegedly shot at a
woman. Washington's is already serving 26 years in prison in connection
with an unrelated case in Denver. On March 12, 2007 the Adams County
district attorney decided not to seek the death penalty against
Todd L. Nelson, Washington's attorney, told Adams County District Judge
C. Vincent Phelps on March 12, 2007 that Washington plans to change his
plea to not guilty by reason of insanity.
His case is set for trial
for March, 2008.
An Adams County jury, after a 19 – day
trial and 17 hours of deliberations convicted Brian Allen Washington of
but acquitted him of a more
serious first-degree murder charge
shooting of Detective Michael Thomas. The jury also convicted Washington of attempted
first-degree assault, as well as second-degree assault for striking
Officer Scott Osgood, who subdued Washington after the shooting. Brian
Allen Washington, was sentenced April 6, 2009 to eighty years in prison.
May 24, 2006 -
- Age 50
Rick Elliot, 50, passed away on May 24, 2006 at his home in Hutchinson,
Kansas. Elliott's wife walked in the bathroom to find her husband dead.
He was a Master Trainer, Judge for the Kansas Police Dog Association,
head K-9 handler for the Hutchinson Correctional Facility, trainer for
Southern Police Canine in North Carolina and held and hosted several dog
seminars. He was also the Owner of Elliott's Police K-9. His
certifications included patrol, narcotics, tracking, and explosives. In
1998, Rick was one of a handful of dog handlers who started the Kansas
Police Dog Association. For nearly 20 years, he worked at the Hutchinson
Correctional Facility with bloodhounds and german shepherds. He trained
dogs throughout the world receiving 12 formal commendation letters and
numerous awards. Elliott leaves behind a wife and two sons. A memorial
fund has been set up for Rick’s wife and two sons with the Hutchinson
Government Employees Credit Union. Donations can be sent to: HGECU c/o
Rick Elliott Memorial Fund, 121 E. Avenue "A", Hutchinson Kansas 67501
May 1, 2006 - San Francisco, California - Age 41
Sergeant Darryl Tsujimoto, 41, died of a heart attack during K-9
training on 5/1/06 at 9:00 p.m. on Treasure Island. Sergeant Tsujimoto
of Alamo had just run a half a mile with a department dog, leading the
exercise to track a suspect, when he collapsed. He collapsed at the same
point the dog located the pretend bad guy. At the time his fellow
officers didn't know if this was part of the training. His partner
thought he was just adding something to the scenario. She questioned him
for a second, and he wasn't responsive." Tsujimoto was taken to San
Francisco General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. He handled K-9
Loki, a German shepherd, and K-9 Barak, a Belgian Malinois. Both were
dogs he had owned, trained and donated to the department. He also
trained many other K-9'S and donated them to smaller police departments
that did not have a K9 unit or that did not have the funding for one.
Many police departments in California sent their officers to train with
Sergeant Tsujimoto because he was known for his expertise in K-9
training. Under Tsujimoto's leadership, the canine unit won gold medals in several
national competitions. Tsujimoto had also served in the Mission, Taraval,
Park and Tenderloin Task Force stations, and in the narcotics and vice
units. Sergeant Tsujimoto was a 15-year San Francisco Police veteran who
headed the department's nine member canine unit since 1999.
Seventy canine teams attended Darryl's memorial service. Tsujimoto was engaged
to be married to Sonia Rosenberger, a veterinarian. Both
K-9's, Loki and Barak were retired from the San Francisco Police
Department in honor of Darryl and returned to his fiance, Sonia and
family. On June 30, 2007, a donation in the amount of 1 million dollars
was made by
San Francisco philanthropist Nina Ireland which will help finance the
care of retired police dogs after their years of dedicated and tireless
hard work. Ireland made the donation in honor of Sgt.Tsujimoto.
During Darryl's lifetime, he had always wanted to set up a fund in
memory of his first shepherd, Whompus, for charitable purposes that benefited
other animals. Donations can be sent to the Whompus Tsujimoto Fund at
P.O. Box 635, Alamo, CA. 94507 in both Darryl and Whompus's memories.
Corporal Brian C. Putman
April 15, 2006 - Monroe, Louisiana - Age 32
Corporal Brian C.
Putman, 32, of West Monroe, Louisiana, died April 15, 2006, from injuries
sustained in a motorcycle accident while off duty.
The accident occurred after
1 p.m. in West Monroe. A white Chevrolet, driven by Billy Battle, 36, of
West Monroe, turned left in front of Putman, who was riding a motorcycle
on Constitution Drive. Battle was issued a citation for failure to yield
while turning left. Battle was not injured in the accident. Corporal
Putman was pronounced dead by the Ouachita Parish Coroner's Office at
Glenwood Regional Medical Center. Putman had been with the Monroe Police
Department for several years.
Brian's canine companion, K-9 Jerry,
who he was just partnered with for 3 months
was given to another
handler and continued working with the Monroe Police Department.
He was a member of the National Police Canine Association, Louisiana
Union of Police Association, International Union of Police Association,
Monroe Police Department of Relief Association and the Monroe Police
Department Union Local 81.
April 10, 2006 - Staten Island, New York - Age 55
Steve Vitale, 55, was shot and killed on
April 10, 2006. Steve was a retired police officer who was a member of
the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department for over
22 years. He was the Director of Operations, K-9 Division for GSS
Security Services. Before joining GSS Security Services, he was a
regional security supervisor for New England Motor Freight for seven
years and four years as a security specialist for Federal Express. On
the night of his death, his wife Karen who was with him, said they were
trailed by a green Honda in what is being called a road rage incident. The
driver of the green Honda then started waiving a gun at them when both
vehicles exited onto Victory Road. Mr. & Mrs. Vitale were on there way
to the Dynasty Taste Restaurant in the Kenbar Plaza in New Springville
at about 7:00 p.m. when the driver of the green Honda then parked on
Richmond Hill Road and walked into the parking lot and shot 15 rounds at Steven
Vitale and his wife with a
9mm Glock semi-automatic gun as he and his wife of 19 years stepped out of their
SUV. The Vitale's were returning from a weekend in Atlantic City, where
they were celebrating their 19th wedding anniversary. Steve Vitale was
pronounced dead at Staten Island University Hospital North. One bullet
also penetrated the back of the truck and hit Vitale’s 4 -year-old black
Labrador retriever in the left ear, a bomb sniffing dog named Philly,
who was treated at the Veterinary Emergency Center and is expected to
survive. The gunman then sped off in the Honda. Using a license
number provided by a witness, the police traced the car to a house on
Travis Avenue, less than a mile from the mall. Allen Lau, 46, surrendered
about 3 a.m. after a six-hour standoff at his home. Steve Vitale started the Port Authority
emergency services unit and the torch run, which benefits the Special
Olympics. He was awarded the Medal of Valor after the 1993 twin towers
attack. Mr. Vitale was a Vietnam vet and is survived by his wife Karen
and three daughters, Stefanie 29, Dawn Marie 27, and Michelle 24.
Allen Lau, a retired NYPD
officer, has been charged with second degree murder. Lau retired from the Manhattan
17th precinct in February of 2005. He was taken to Staten Island
University North for treatment of a head injury after an alcohol-induced
fall after surrendering to police. On May 19, 2006, Allen Lau,
A former city police
officer, was indicted on 23 counts in connection with the killing a
former Port Authority officer in an apparent case of road rage. He is
being charged with second-degree murder and weapons possession in an
indictment that included 21 weapons charges.
Lau is also charged with the attempted murder of Vitale's wife, who was
also in the car at the time and is being held without bail.
2, 2008 Judge Stephen Rooney denied to have the murder trial case moved
off Staten Island. Jury selection for the case was to start on June 9,
9, 2008 in State Supreme Court on Staten Island, Mr. Lau pleaded guilty
to first-degree manslaughter in exchange for a 21-year prison sentence.
The original murder charge carried a maximum penalty of 25 years to
life. The plea deal avoided a lengthy appeals process for an ongoing
quest for an insanity defense plea
deal will avoid a lengthy appeals process and thwart Lau's ongoing quest
for an insanity defense. Vitale's family agreed with the plea bargain.
Before Allen Lau was sentenced
on June 24,
Mrs. Vitale addressed Allen Lau and said,
"You should be
a retired police officer, a person who took an oath to protect and
serve," "Instead," Mrs. Vitale said, "you are a disgrace to the men and
women who go out every day and put their lives on the line to uphold the
law." Lau reacted to the scolding by turning his head toward the widow
and with no remorse and disrespect belched at her.
Allen Lau was
then sentenced by Judge Stephen J. Rooney to
21 years in prison and and five years post release supervision.
suit was filed June 26, 2006 in the amount of $100 million against the
city and the NYPD by the widow of Steven Vitale, Mrs. Karen Vitale. The
claim alleges that the city of New York and the NYPD were "negligent,
careless, and reckless in the hiring, training, monitoring,
disciplining, supervising, and retention of New York City police officer
Allen Lau." The claim seeks damages for negligence, personal injuries,
intentional infliction of emotional distress, negligent infliction of
emotional distress, property damage, economic loss, loss of consortium,
and other charges.
Kathleen Margaret Barrett
March 23, 2006 - Middleboro, Massachusetts- Age 53
Massachusetts State Trooper,
Sgt. Kathleen M. Barrett, died March 23, 2006 after a long battle with
cancer at the age of 53 after being diagnosed with breast cancer in
1998. Kathleen Barrett joined the Massachusetts State Police in 1980 and
became one of the top canine officers in the region. Kathleen was a
Master Trainer in Utility and Cadaver with the North American Police
Work Dog Association. She traveled along the East Coast over the years
with her specially trained dogs to work with other officers in a wide
range of law enforcement searches and considered a nationally renowned
trainer of cadaver dog teams. Sgt. Kathleen Barrett was involved in many
high profile cases which involved searching for serial
killer victims, combing the rubble of the World Trade Center for bodies
after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks and worked the devastated
neighborhoods of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina and also helped the
Royal Canadian Mounted Police only to mention a
few. She had countless searches that involved 22 states. Despite her
illness, she was out on a search the same month she passed away.
In 1997 Sgt. Barrett. started traveling the country, training and
certifying canine teams and giving seminars on cadaver work. Her K-9
partners were “Dan” & “Adam”. In January, Barrett was given a bravery
award named for Mark Charbonnier, who was killed in the line of duty in
1994 and received standing ovation for over 3 minutes from over 400
state troopers. Sergeant Barrett received a final accolade a week
before her death for her 26 years of service as a Massachusetts State
and in the
K-9 unit for 21 of those. She received the Colonel's Award of Excellence, which has been
granted to only seven previous troopers. Her K-9 partner, Adam,
was with her to the end and was not able to adapt to another person
since they were side by side for 9 years and was euthanized, cremated,
and buried with Trooper Barrett. Kathy's other K9 partner Dan was also
buried with her per her wishes. A total of 115 K-9 teams
attended the funeral. Barrett is survived by a son, Sean. The family is
requesting donations to be made to The National Center for Missing and
Exploited Children, 699 Prince Street, Alexandria, VA 22313 in memory of
Sgt. Kathleen M. Barrett, Massachusetts State Police K-9 Unit. On
October 22, 2009 a canine training field was named in her honor behind
the Middleboro barracks.
Jason Lynn Norton
January 22, 2006 - Taji, Iraq- Age 32
Sgt. Adam Leigh Cann
January 5, 2006 - Ramadi, Iraq- Age 23
Size- 3.4 megs
Sgt. Jason Lynn
Norton, 32, of Miami, Oklahoma, was killed January 22, 2006,
by a roadside bomb when his armored
Humvee struck an improvised explosive device while conducting
convoy escort duties. Three
Elmendorf airmen were in the armored
Humvee when it blew apart in
the vicinity of Taji, Iraq, about
18 miles north of Baghdad. Sgt. Norton's K9 was not with him
at the time he was killed. He was a patrol and dog-unit officer
assigned to 3rd Security Forces Squadron
at Elmendorf Air Force Base, Alaska. Also
Staff Sgt. Brian McElroy, 28, who
was with him died from his
and a third person was flown to Germany for treatment of
non-life-threatening injuries which included burns, scrapes and a
head wound. Norton, a patrol and K-9 officer, had been stationed in
Alaska since 2002 and worked alongside other police agencies in
Anchorage responding to bomb threats against schools and airliners.
Norton grew up in Miami, Okla., and joined the Air Force in 1992.
He was stationed at McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas, F.E. Warren
Air Force Base in Wyoming, Tinker Air Force Base in Oklahoma and
Anderson Air Force Base in Guam before landing at Elmendorf in 2002.
At Elmendorf, he was a dog handler and trained a pack of 10 military
dogs for attack work and bomb sniffing. More than 500 Airmen,
Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and multinational partners attended a
memorial service Jan. 27 at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait, to pay their final
respects for the two Airmen while a bag pipe musician played
Amazing Grace. Later that afternoon, over 600 Airmen at the 386th
Air Expeditionary Wing held a memorial retreat in Sergeants Norton
and McElroy’s honor. The retreat included a missing man guard mount
roll call and a 21 gun salute. On June 5, 2006 dozens of mourners
gathered for a joint memorial service at Arlington National
Cemetery. A firing party fired a three-volley salute, and a bugler
played taps over the sound of roaring planes. Both men had been in
Iraq for three months when they were killed and were due home in
summer. Norton's wife, Cristina, was given an American flag at the
service. Norton and McElroy shared the same coffin and headstone
because their remains were unidentifiable, according to an Arlington
Cemetery spokeswoman. Norton was awarded the Bronze Star and Purple
Heart posthumously. Sgt. Jason L. Norton leaves behind a wife,
Christina, a son Dalton, age 7, and a daughter Rebecca, age 8.
Donations can be mailed to Jason L. Norton Memorial Account, C/O
Alaska USA Federal Credit Uion, PO BOX 196613, Anchorage, Alaska
99519-6613. Make checks or money orders payable to Cristina Norton.
And insert in remarks section (where you normally put account
numbers on bottom left of check) the statement: "For the Jason L.
Norton Memorial Account".
Adam Leigh Cann, 23, of Davie Florida, died trying to protect his
comrades and civilians at a police recruitment center in Ramadi, Iraq at
approximately 7:40 a.m. on January 5, 2006. Sergeant Cann, part of the
military police, sensed trouble when his police canine Bruno became
agitated at the possible scent of explosives nearby. According to fellow
Marines, Cann did not wait to take action to save people around him. He
stood between the man that would become a suicide bomber with about 18
pounds of explosives in a vest with grenades and ball bearings contained
within it. Eighty were killed and five marines including Sgt. Cann were
killed in the attack of approximately 1,100 men that were attending the
last day at the police recruitment center of a four-day screening drive
volunteering to help revive the violent city’s defunct police
department. Sgt. Cann joined the Marine Corps on Nov. 27, 2000. He was a
member of the military police assigned to Security Battalion, Marine
Corps Base in Camp Pendleton, Calif. Sergeant Cann was on his second
Iraqi tour in his second enlistment with the military. He already had
served one tour in Afghanistan and another in Iraq and was scheduled to
end his tour in March. While in Iraq, his unit was attached to the 2nd
Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force. His personal awards
include the Navy Unit Commendation, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation,
Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global
War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service
Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and Navy and Marine Corps Overseas
Service Ribbon. Sgt. Cann also was in charge of five other K-9 units spread
between five bases.
other dog handlers were injured
along with three working dogs in the suicide attack at Ramadi police
recruiting event. All three dogs were treated for their injuries in
Baghdad by military veterinarians at the 10th Combat Support Hospital.
One of the military dogs, "Bruno" was partnered with Sgt. Cann for
approximately 6 years, was wounded in the blast by shrapnel and returned
back into service for several months and then retired. All three injured
dogs were treated by the 72nd followng [medical evacuation] and will
Sgt. Cann was awarded the Bronze Star and posthumously awarded
the Purple Heart at his burial at Arlington
National Cemetery on January 18th 2006. At the Marine Corps K9
Kennel in Fallujah, plans are in the works to name the compound after
Sgt. Cann. Cann is the first K-9 handler killed in action since
the Vietnam War.
On March 28, 2008,
in his memory
at the Marine Corps Logistics Base, Barstow, the base's kennel was named
the Adam L. Cann K-9 Facility after Cann.
Cann is survived by
his father, Leigh Cann, mother Betsy Beebee, and two brothers Justin,
and Leigh Cann Jr. age 20.
Officer John P. Hooks
21, 2005 - Sioux City, Iowa- Age 36
Officer John P.
Hooks, 36, was found dead on November 21, 2005 at his home. Hooks
and his mother shared the home at 43 Vista Hills Drive in Plymouth
County, Plymouth County. She had left earlier in the day and
returned about 3 p.m., when she discovered his body. At 3:20 p.m.
she called the Plymouth County Communications Center and said that
she believed her son was dead. She requested law enforcement and
ambulance services. Autopsy results at
St. Luke's Regional Medical Center
showed he died from carbon
monoxide poisoning. Hooks joined the Sioux City Police Department in
2002. Before that he worked at the North Sioux City Police
Department. Hooks had been an award-winning member of K-9 teams
since his days with the North Sioux City Police Department. In 2000
he was on a team that won first place in the United States Police
Canine Association's annual narcotic certification trials. In 2005
Hooks was a member of the Sioux City Police Department's K9 team
that took first place at a regional competition in the United States
Police Canine Association's detector dog trials. Officer Hooks K9
partner was “Kane”
Officer Mario Roberto Jenkins
24, 2005 - Orlando, Florida- Age 29
Canine Officer Mario
Jenkins, 29, was killed outside the Citrus Bowl on 9/24/05 at
approximately 5:04 p.m. as fans were arriving for a football game that
was starting at 6:00 p.m. between the University of Central Florida and
Marshall University. Officer Jenkins, a four-year veteran with the
University of Central Florida Police Department, was working with the
state to curb underage drinking. Jenkins, who was working undercover
wearing street clothes, began work on "Operation Knight Watch" about 2
p.m. and was assisting six other officers and seven agents with the
state Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco. The incident started
when officer Jenkins tried to break up a drinking party and some turned
belligerent. When he encountered resistance he fired shots into the air.
A uniformed reserve Orlando Police officer, Dennis R. Smith, 55, who had
retired after 25 years on the force in December of 2001, was patrolling
on a bicycle and heard the shots that attracted his attention and
immediately responded to the scene. Officer Smith not knowing Officer
Jenkins was a police officer, fired three shots at him, mortally wounding him
in the back. Officer Jenkins, before he collapsed, returned two shots at
Officer Smith narrowly missing him. Michael John Young, 23, was also shot in the fracas and was taken
to Orlando Regional Medical Center and was listed in fair condition with
a gunshot wound to the stomach. A physician at Orlando Regional Medical Center who was
near by and attended to Officer Jenkins said he died almost immediately.
Officer Jenkins graduated from Tarpon Spring schools and attended Santa
Fe Community College in Gainesville and graduated from the college’s
Institute of Public Safety in 2000. Officer Jenkins was a K9 officer for
six months and his K9’S name was “Makye”. Jenkins had previously worked
for the Clermont Police Department in 2001 and had served in the U.S.
Marine Corps. Reserves from1994-2000. Jenkins was posthumously promoted to the
rank of corporal at the University of Central Florida Police Department
on October 1, 2005.
His wife Valerie Vaughn Jenkins
who he married in 2001 survives him. On October 23, 2007, Valerie Vaughn
Jenkins filed a lawsuit against the City of Orlando, Orlando Police
Department and Dennis R. Smith. UCF and Sun Trust Bank have
established the Mario Jenkins Memorial Trust Fund to benefit his family.
Donations can be made at any SunTrust Bank in Central Florida.
Dennis Smith of the Orlando Police Department was cleared December 15,
2005, of any wrongdoing for fatally shooting Officer Jenkins. Michael
John Young was
charged December 15, 2005 with battery on a law enforcement officer, a
third-degree felony, and obstructing or opposing a police officer, a
Quinn Jackson Witherspoon
13, 2005 - Mooresville, North Carolina - Age 34
Officer Quinn Witherspoon,
34, died 9/13/05 at 904 South Magnolia Street in his Mooresville home.
He was found lying on the couch in the living room with a single gunshot
wound to the head with his own 40 caliber Beretta service weapon. His wife Misty placed the
911 call at approximately 2:10 p.m. At the time of the shooting two of
his children, 3 and 18 months were sleeping in a bedroom and his
7-year-old daughter was at school. His wife told police she was in the bathroom when the
gun fell from a shelf and was taking the gun to her husband when she
slipped and the gun accidentally went off and the bullet hit Witherspoon
in the head. Officer Witherspoon was an eleven-year veteran of the
Concord Police Department in North Carolina since 1994. A native of
Mooresville, Witherspoon graduated with an associate degree in criminal
justice from Mitchell Community College. He also received his Basic Law
Enforcement Training from Mitchell Community College. Witherspoon also
received a Bachelor of Science degree from Gardner Webb University.
Witherspoon was a K9 officer for eight years and the North Carolina
State Representative for the International Police Work Dog Association.
Quinn Witherspoon's Concord police K9, "Tank", attended the burial and
watched his partner carried to his final resting place while a police
honor guard gave a 21-gun salute. Approximately 400 people attended the
funeral. His wife Misty who he was married to for 11 years and his
three children, Katherine, Sydney & Seth, survive Officer Witherspoon.
The City of
Concord Police Department has established a fund for Officer Quinn
Witherspoon three children. To donate to this fund, make a check payable
to the Witherspoon Children Trust Fund. The donations can be mailed to
The Witherspoon Children Trust c/o City of Concord Finance Department,
P.O. Box 308, Concord, N.C. 28026-0308.
Witherspoon, 32, was arrested and charged October 5, 2005 with
first-degree murder after the September
shooting death of her husband. A $500,000 bond was posted for Misty
Keller Witherspoon on March10, 2006 and was released from Iredell County
Jail. The bond is conditional upon Misty Witherspoon having no
unsupervised contact with her children and having no contact with any of
the state's witnesses who aren't directly related to her.
Prosecutors have said they
will not ask for the death penalty. On November 29, 2006, Kelly
Witherspoon was indicted on charges stemming from alleged financial
crimes. The 58 counts brought in Iredell Superior Court against Misty
Keller Witherspoon include allegations of embezzlement, identity theft
and obtaining property by false pretenses. According to an assistant
district attorney in Iredell County, Witherspoon stole at least $100,000
from her church, Whitman Park Baptist, including taking $25,000 from the
church's collection plates. Martin said that Witherspoon also defrauded
her sister, Karen Keller. The Judge set a new $30,000 secured bond for
the financial crimes charges and Misty Witherspoon posted bond and was
Additional motions in the case will be heard on Jan. 22, 2007. At
an administrative hearing in Iredell County Superior Court, it was
agreed that Misty Keller Witherspoon's trial for the financial crimes
will begin the week of May 21, 2007. Her first-degree murder trial will
begin the week of June 25, 2007. On April 30, 2007, Misty Keller
Witherspoon pleaded guilty to 37 counts of embezzlement and three counts
of identity theft. Iredell Assistant District Attorney Alan Martin said
between 2003 and 2005 Misty Keller Witherspoon embezzled $27,720 from
her church, Whitman Park Baptist in Mooresville, and fraudulently
obtained credit cards in her sister's name. Witherspoon had become the
church's assistant treasurer after her husband, Quinn Witherspoon, who
was the treasurer, became busy with his law enforcement duties.
On July 16, 2007, after only a few hours of deliberations, a jury of 8
women and 4 men found Misty Witherspoon guilty of first degree murder in
the shooting death of her husband just before noon. Superior Court Judge
Misty Witherspoon with life in prison without parole. The judge also
sentenced her on several other charges she pleaded guilty to earlier in
the year. Misty was also sentenced to three months for 40 counts of I.D.
theft and 15 months for embezzlement. Misty will serve those sentences
concurrently with her murder charge.
Roy Lundell Nelson Jr.
13, 2005 - New Smyrna, Florida - Age 36
Officer Roy L. Nelson Jr., 36, and his police K9, Ceasar, were killed on 8/13/05 approximately 11:40 p.m. when responding
to a scene of a reported burglary and swerved his vehicle to avoid another vehicle and crashed just east of the South
Causeway on State Road A1A. Both Nelson and his K9 Ceasar were pronounced dead at the scene. A witness reported seeing a
white pickup pull onto the road from Richmond Drive, on Bouchelle Island. The witness told Florida Highway Patrol that
the truck pulled in front of Nelson and he swerved to avoid it, causing him to crash into a guardrail and overturn. The
truck left the scene. At the time, Officer Nelson did not have his lights or siren on at the time of the crash and was
traveling in excess of 70- mph in a 50-mph zone while not wearing his seat belt. Police
are looking for a white, full size pickup, possibly a 1990’s Ford F-150. Nelson was nearly a seven year veteran of the
New Smyrna Beach police. Officer Nelson’s K9 Ceasar was a 3 ½ year-old Belgian Malinois who had trained with Officer
Nelson more than 400 hours in two years and was Officer Nelson’s first police dog which lived with his family. Nelson
served as a patrol officer and was a certified bicycle officer as
well as a member of the department's special response team during
his career. Nelson received numerous accolades and commendations from both citizens and supervisors during his
11 year career also.
Officer Nelson was chosen as a member of the presidential detail
when President George W. Bush visited the city in 2002 and also arrested
Michael Thomas Seibart, one of "America's Most Wanted". Officer Nelson is the departments first death in the line of duty. Officer Nelson leaves behind his wife Angie and his
two daughters, Samantha Steinmetz 13 and Sabrina Nelson 2.
Donations can be made to Roy Nelson Canine Memorial Fund, c/o Friends
Bank, 2222 State Road 44, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32168 or Friends Bank,
1504 S. Ridgewood Ave., Edgewater, FL 32132. The city of New Smyrna
Beach has set up a memorial fund for Nelson's family at Wachovia Bank.
Donations can be made at any Wachovia branch under the name "Officer Roy
Nelson Memorial Fund."
Officer Kelly Lee Hammond
July 22, 2005 - Louisville, Kentucky - Age 39
Officer Matthew Haverkamp
July 15, 2005 - Golf Manor, Ohio - Age 29
Louisville Metro Police K9 Officer Kelly Hammond, 39, died on 6/22/05 at a friends farm in the 17000 block of
Taylorsville Road in eastern Jefferson County while helping a friend cut grass. He was standing between the
front and rear wheels of the tractor, giving instructions to a juvenile in the drivers seat on how to operate it
when the driver of a tractor lost his footing on the clutch. The tractor lurched forward and pinned him
under a large rear wheel killing him at the scene. Officer Hammond was not on duty at the time. Officer
Hammond was a 12 year veteran of the department and uniformed officer with the Secret Service. He is survived
by his wife, Anita, and two sons, Nick & Chase. Hammond received a military-style funeral, including taps,
a 21-gun salute, a single bagpiper and a flag ceremony. Officer
Hammond had also worked with his K9 partner "Axa" who retired. Hammond’s
recent K9 partner, Barry, will be reassigned.
Golf Manor K-9 Officer
Matthew Haverkamp, 29, was killed in a motor vehicle accident July 15,
2005 at 2:35 a.m. Officer Haverkamp was off duty driving his black
2001 Range Rover Discovery on I-75 south when he swerved out of his lane
and collided with a white 2005 Lincoln Navigator between Galbraith and
Paddock exits. Haverkamp’s SUV slammed into the guardrail and flipped
over an embankment. Haverkamp was ejected from the SUV and found more
than 100 feet away in a shallow drainage ditch and was pronounced dead
at the scene. Hamilton County Coroner Dr. O'dell Owens said that
Haverkamp died from a broken neck. The driver of the Lincoln Navigator had a fractured knee
and injured back. Witnesses to the accident estimated Officer Haverkamp’s speed at least 80 mph. Investigators say Haverkamp was at
fault in the wreck by failing to control his vehicle and was not wearing
his seatbelt. Hamilton County Coroner, Dr. O’dell Owens, revealed that
Haverkamp was under the influence of alcohol at the time and his blood
alcohol content was .19 at the time of the crash. In Ohio, the legal
driving limit is .08. Officer Haverkamp had been on the Golf Manor
force eight years and had started the department’s K9 program and bike
patrol. Haverkamp graduated with a degree in criminal justice from
the University of Cincinnati. His canine’s was a Belgian Malinois named Tibo
and was not with him at the time of the accident because Tibo was
staying at a veterinarian's office recuperating after breaking a leg
while off duty about two weeks before the accident. The parents of
Officer Matt Haverkamp, Bruce and Nancy Haverkamp, have established the
Foundation to raise money for police dogs to
memorialize K-9 Officer Matt Haverkamp.
Trooper Jonathan Wade Parker
May 16, 2005 - Sumter County, South Carolina - Age 29
Trooper Jonathan Parker, 29, was killed on 5/16/05 at approximately noon. An
armed robbery suspect who was running from police had robbed the Circle-C store at a truck stop on I-95 in Colleton County
around 10:00 a.m. earlier in the morning and was being pursued by Clarendon County Deputies and Manning Police Officers at
high speed. Trooper Parker and a colleague had just left their office in separate vehicles in response to bulletins radioed
ahead by officers pursuing Ridel so they could be ahead of the pursuit. Trooper Parker stopped his patrol car on the shoulder
of the Highway, with his blue lights and wearing his seatbelt, to wait for the pursuit to reach his location and was only
there a few minutes when the suspect rammed his older model red Ford Thunderbird into the rear of Parker’s cruiser
near the intersection of Highway S.C. 527 and Highway 378 which ended an
approximate 22 mile chase of speeds up to 100 mpr. After the crash an officer checked on Ridel who wasn’t moving
so he went to check on Trooper Parker. While checking on Trooper Parker the officer saw Ridel crawl out of the sunroof
and start running. The officer fired 6 warning shots in the air and Ridel stopped and raised his hands. Before they could
get to him, Ridel began running again and 2 more warning shots were fired into the air and Ridel stopped again. By that time,
two Clarendon County deputies also involved in the chase caught up to him and handcuffed Ridel. The suspect, Eric Shawn Ridel,
slammed into the back of Parker’s vehicle with such impact forcing Parker’s vehicle into trees and then catch on fire
resulting in death from the impact. Eric Shawn Ridel, 34, of Hartford, Connecticut, was listed in critical condition with
punctured lungs and broken vertebrae at Palmetto Health Richland Hospital. Ridel was on parole from a Connecticut prison, where he had served a four-year
sentence for a 1999 burglary conviction. Ridel was convicted twice in 1999 and twice in 1998 for burglary. In 1994, Ridel
was convicted of various charges including criminal impersonation and a misdemeanor drug offense. Those convictions led to
a 90-day jail sentence and a six-month suspended sentence. Those offenses were committed in the Connecticut cities of Madison,
Manchester, Hartford and East Hartford.
Eric Shawn Ridel has been charged with murder in connection of Trooper
Parker's death. Trooper Parker has served with the South Carolina Highway Patrol for 5 years and
worked with a German Shepherd narcotic K9 assigned to Troop One, Post A which includes Sumter and Clarendon County.
Trooper Parker had previously served with Sumter County Sheriff’s Office for 2 years. He is survived by his wife Sue.
Eric Ridel was serving a 30 year sentence in connection with the armed
robbery in Waterboro. Eric Ridel's trial for the murder of Trooper
Parker lasted three days with two hours of deliberations when a jury of
seven women and five men found Eric Shawn Ridel guilty of killing
Trooper Jonathan Parker and was sentenced on 6/6/07 by Judge George C.
James Jr. to life in prison without parole.
Officer Jesse Erick Sollmon
March 25, 2005 - Easton, Pennsylvania - Age 36
K9 Officer Jesse E. Sollman, 36, was
accidentally shot in the back and killed on March 25, 2005, by one of
his fellow officers, Matthew Renninger, after conducting a training exercise at the Easton
Police Department headquarters in Pennsylvania on South Third Street
near the end of his shift. The incident occurred after Sollman and
others returned to the station from SWAT team training. Officer Sollman
was not wearing a bulletproof vest when he was shot approximately 3:30
p.m. in the back with a H & K 40 caliber semiautomatic weapon.
Officer Renninger said that he was
cleaning his gun and was bumped and the gun discharged.The bullet entered Sollman's back in
the left area above his kidneys. The bullet grazed his back of his left
rib, went through his spleen, liver and diaphragm and penetrated the
aorta which is the main blood vessel in the body. The bullet continued
in an upward direction fracturing the front of the fifth rib and lodging
in soft tissue right above the fifth rib. Officer Sollman had powder
burns at the entrance wound and was said to be shot within a distance of
three inches. The deminsions of the room where Officer Sollman was shot
was a small 7’ x 10’ room. At the time of the shooting the three
officers in the room were Jesse Sollman, Matthew Renninger and Robert
Weber. He was taken by
ambulance to Cottingham Stadium about eight blocks away where he was
flown by helicopter to St. Luke's Hospital in Fountain Hill where he
succumbed to his wounds at 4:24 p.m. Renninger was driven
to Muhlenberg Hospital for an evaluation and was admitted and spent five
days there. Officer Sollman was a Corporal in
the US Marine Corps and veteran. Prior to working for the Easton Police
Department he worked for Middlesex County College Police in New Jersey
and the Federal Bureau of Prisons in New York. He had served with the
Easton Police Department for 8 years and was with the K9 Unit, Tactical
Team, firearms instructor and defensive tactical instructor. Officer
Sollman’s K9 was named Finn. He is survived by his wife Carin who he was
married to for eight years, his six year old daughter, Savannah Rose
Sollman, and his 2 year old son, Jacob Eric Sollman.
Donations for the Sollman family
can be made in care of the Fraternal Order of Police, Washington Lodge #
17 and mailed to the Easton Police Department 25 South 3rd St. Easton Pa
18042 attn: Off Ray Mead.
On March 16, 2006,
findings of a grand jury investigation, a scathing 24 page report, were
completed into the shooting death of Easton
Police Officer Jesse Sollman. The
grand jury found that Officer Matthew Renninger, the officer who shot
Sollman on March 25, 2005, conducted himself in a negligent manner and
directly caused the death of Officer Sollman. The grand jury found that
while Renninger's actions were negligent, they did not rise to the level
of criminal negligence or recklessness. They also found that the
evidence and the surrounding circumstances of the shooting of Officer
Sollman by Renninger demonstrate that the shooting was unintentional and
without malice. The report also listed 10 specific recommendations
to improve operations at the Easton Police Department, including the
termination of Officer Renninger who has been on paid
administrative leave since the shooting. Officer Matthew Renninger, an
eight-year veteran of the Easton Police Department, retired May 9, 2006
and claimed the shooting left him psychologically unable to ever again
work as a police officer. A year later the city's police pension
commission awarded him a $10,765 annual pension.
The widow of Officer
Jesse Sollmon, Carin, filed a $20 million lawsuit. On
November 9, 2009, after more than a two year legal battle, she won a
settlement of 5 million dollars in an agreement behind closed doors the
day the trial was to start in Philadelphia
. The town of
Easton has until Jan. 31, 2010 to
come up with $3 million, and the entire $5
million must be paid out by Dec. 31, 2010,
according to the terms of a settlement. The settlement allowed the city to avoid a
potentially publicly damaging trial which could have ended in a much
more costly jury verdict.
Officer Lisa Kern
July 11, 2004 - Minneapolis, Minnesota - Age 35
K-9 Officer Lisa Kern, 35, of the Minneapolis, MN Police Department died
on July 11, 2004. Officer Kern was a 14 year veteran who died of a brain
aneurysm while on duty and taking a break at one of the police
precincts. At the time Officer Kern was working an overnight shift when
at some point she took a break at the police departments 5th precinct,
3101 Nicollet Ave. South. Its not clear precisely when she stopped for
a break and at the time was with her K-9 “Jag” in the vehicle. At
approximately 1:00 a.m. a 911 dispatcher requested her assistance on a
crime investigation and when the dispatcher received no response a
request was sent out for other officers to find her. An officer found
her squad car at the 5th precinct with the motor running and K-9 “Jag”
still in the vehicle. A search of the precinct led officers to the
woman's rest room where she was found unconscious. Shortly before 3:00
a.m. the officers in her police department were notified she
died. Officer Kern became a K-9 Officer in 1997 and shortly in the fall
of that year her first dog “Jake” were called in for a burglary in
downtown Minneapolis. K-9 “Jake” was unleashed to search for the
suspect and fell 4 stories from a building roof top. K-9 “Jake”
suffered a broken spine and had to be euthanized. Her police department
awarded her and K-9 “Jake” a Medal of Honor in 1998. During
approximately 7 years in the K-9 Unit Officer Kern was honored 15 times
by the United States Police Canine Association. She leaves behind a 1
year old son named Paul. A memorial account
has been established to benefit her son Paul. Donations may be sent to
Wells Fargo Private Banking, 430 North Wabasha, Suite 301, MAC
N9117-030, St. Paul, MN 55101.
Michael Allen Van Kuren
March 31, 2004 - Bradford, Pennsylvania - Age 36
Deputy Michael Van Kuren, 36, of Warren Center was shot and killed along with Deputy
Christopher M. Burgert, 30, of Sayre, on March 31, 2004 in Wells
Township, Bradford County, in Northeastern Pennsylvania with a .357
Magnum. Both were
trying to serve a bench warrant on Dustin F. Briggs, 27, for failure to
appear in court at approximately 11:00 a.m. At the time both Deputies
were wearing vests and Deputy Van Kuren’s K-9 "Montana", a rottweiler, was not with him. When
both Deputies failed to check in, Pennsylvania State Police were sent in
and discovered both Deputies shot and killed in the junk yard drive way
of Briggs home on Congdon Road. One of the Deputies guns was missing
from the scene. The suspect, Dustin F. Briggs, accused of killing both
Deputies was arrested after a 36-hour man hunt at approximately 6:30
p.m. the following day after a tip from someone who reported seeing
him. Pennsylvania State Police Criminal Investigator Vince Schreffler
of the Laporte Barracks in Sullivan County had spotted movement 60
yards off the road south of Thunder Creek Road and it turned out to be
Briggs. Briggs previously committed criminal possession of a weapon, a
felony, in late 1997 when he tried to pull a loaded pistol on two New
York state troopers after a traffic stop, but was wrestled to the ground
and served more than two years in a New York State prison in Watertown,
N.Y. from 1998-2000. Six months earlier he tried to run over a police
officer in Troy N.Y. He was recently charged with selling
methamphetamine in Bradford County. Deputy Van Kuren had served with
the Bradford County Sheriff's Department for 10 years, and is survived by
his wife Elane, his son Andrew Todd and his daughter Tiffany. Many
witnessed the bond at the funeral of Bradford County
Deputy Sheriff Michael Van Kuren when his canine, Montana, was led to
the coffin. The dog let out a bawl when he recognized his master in the
coffin, and then jumped up on the coffin to lick his partners face as if
was his way to say good bye.
Deputy Van Kuren's K9 "Montana" went to live with his wife Elane
and about seven months
later, died "of a broken heart,"
from being away from Deputy Van Kuren and was laid to rest with Deputy
The family requests
contributions made in VanKuren's name to the VanKuren Children's
Scholarship Fund, c/o Citizens & Northern Bank, 428 Main St., Towanda,
PA 18848, or the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, P.O. Box 8249, Missoula,
An eight-woman, four-man
jury deliberated more than 10 hours and found Dustin F. Briggs guilty of 2 counts
of first degree murder
for the shooting of two Bradford County
Michael A. VanKuren, 36, and Christopher M. Burgert , 30, and
one for robbery on February 7, 2006.
deliberated only a little more than two hours before rejecting a
life-without-parole prison term on February 9, 2006, and sentenced
Dustin Briggs to death during
the penalty phase.
15, 2006, Dustin F.
Briggs was formally sentenced to death by Judge Barry Feudale.
R.C.M.P Cpl. James Wilbert Gregson Galloway
February 28, 2004 - Edmonton, Canada - Age 53
Corporal James Wilbert
Gregson Galloway, 53, was shot in the back and killed February 28, 2004 after gunfire erupted at
the scene of a standoff at a home in Spruce Grove. Officers were originally called to Greystone
Drive cul-de-sac around 11:00 a.m. to investigate a report of a bullet hole in a vehicle of a
neighbor. The bullet had entered the driver's side window and exited through a rear fender.
Investigating officers were told a resident that there was an agitated man holed up in a nearby
residence and he was armed. The RCMP emergency response team was called in to seal off the area.
At around 5:30 p.m. the suspect, Martin Charles Ostopovich, 41, attempted to leave the area
in his Toyota pickup truck and Corporal Galloway rammed his suburban police truck into Ostopovich's
truck at approximately 45 mph on the drivers side to prevent him from getting away. After ramming
the vehicle, Corporal Galloway, who was wearing a standard issue soft-bodied vest but not bullet-proof
protective vest, exited his vehicle to take cover behind his vehicle when gunfire erupted and he was
shot once in the back by Ostopovich. The bullet went through his chest, ribs, lungs, diaphragm and
liver and Corporal Galloway died within one minute. Other RCMP returned gunfire striking Ostopovich
with 12 bullets from an MP5 sub-machine gun and M16 in his arms, chest, neck, head and left leg and died
within 10 minutes. They were taken to hospital by ambulance where Corporal Galloway and the suspect were
pronounced dead. The man accused of killing Galloway had been diagnosed with schizophrenia, but
refused treatment and also could not afford the medication. In 2002 Corporal James Galloway, an
RCMP dog handler, received a Certificate of Achievement on September 14th in Halifax at SARSCENE,
the annual search and rescue workshop sponsored by the National Search and Rescue Secretariat (NSS).
Corporal Galloway, who grew up in Quebec was living in Sherwood Park, Alberta, joined the RCMP in 1969
and its police dog section in 1975. Among his many personal initiatives to aid the search and rescue
(SAR) community are his work in helping Alberta search dog teams form a province wide association, called
the RCMP Civilian Search and Rescue Service Dog Association, and the time he takes teaching and
implementing standards for SAR dog teams. More than 4,600 hundred people attended his service along
with over 100 dogs. Corporal Galloway’s dog Cito attended the service in the church. Later the dog
faithfully trailed his former partner's coffin as it was driven away in a hearse. Corporal Galloway
had 35 years of service with the RCMP, 29 of those years as a K-9 handler. Corporal Galloway is survived
by his wife Margaret and three children, Jason 32, Karen 31 and Cory 28.
Donations may be made to RCMP Civilian Search Dog Association of
Alberta, c/o of Sherwood Park Detachment or The Veternarian Teaching
Hospital Expansion at Western College of Veternarian Medicine Saskatoon,
On July 19, 2008, a dedication ceremony attended by his wife and
at the University of Saskatchewan's Western College of Veterinary
Galloway's canine legacy will be passed on to future generations of
A patient examination room in the WCVM's new two-storey addition was
officially named in memory of Galloway at a ceremony. The veterinary
teaching hospital's room 1522 includes a framed photograph and memorial
of Galloway, with his last canine partner Cito.
Deputy Sheriff Brian Robert Litz
February 7, 2004 - Marion County, Florida - Age 36
Litz, 36, was shot and killed February 7, 2004 at approximately 1300
hours while making a routine well-being check on an elderly man, Ivan K.
Gotham, 74, who lived alone in a retirement community at 9030 S.W. 104th
Place in Pine Run, Ocala, Florida. The man's youngest son, Gary Gotham called from his
Virginia home to report that he hadn't been able to reach his father for
two days and called the Sheriff's Office asking the department to check
on his father. He advised that his father had a gun also. When Deputy Litz approached the house to check on Gotham,
he observed Gothan in the house but he would not respond to him. Deputy
Litz moved to the front of the residence to look through a window, in an
attempt to get a better observation of Gotham. Deputy Litz walked up to the
man's front window. As Deputy Litz approached, the suspect opened fire,
killing Deputy Litz instantly. Deputy Litz was struck just above his bulletproof
vest. Gotham kept other deputies at bay until two SWAT officers
arrived and recovered Deputy Litz's body. Gotham was killed when he
grabbed a shotgun a Deputy was holding on him from a kitchen window. Litz was
pronounced dead at
Munroe Regional Medial Center. Litz’s K-9
partner, Justice, accompanied his master's body into the church,
occasionally howling softly as the bagpipes played. Justice remained in
the church throughout the service. Two years ago, Litz, along with K-9
Justice, had received their National K-9 Bomb Certification which
certified them as experts in detecting explosives. Deputy Litz had
served with the Marion County Sheriff's Office in Florida for 7 years
and was a member of the K9 unit. More than 3,000 attended Deputy Litz's
funeral procession. He is survived by his wife Cherie and 5-year-old son
Brian. K-9 Justice was retired and lives with Deputy Litz's wife and
son. Within days, Brian’s wife Cherie received a letter on
Yankee letterhead. Upon hearing of Brian’s death, New York Yankees
owner, Mr. Steinbrenner, took action to ensure Brian’s child would
receive a college education. George Steinbrenner founded the Gold
Shield Foundation in 1981 to aid the families of Florida firemen and
police who lost their lives in the line of duty. The foundation paid
$5,000 toward Brian’s funeral and promised a full college tuition
college for his son Brian when he is ready to go to college.
http://www.goldshieldfoundation.com/index.htm A monument was erected at Marion County Sheriff's Office at the
South West District Office "Deputy Brian Litz Building", S.R. 200 Ocala,
Florida in honor of Deputy Brian Litz. The statue was unveiled and
dedicated on January 13th 2006 and is located within a mile of the
shooting incident. The monument was primarly paid for by private
donations. The Artist : Professional sculpture and native Floridian is
W. Stanley "Sandy" Proctor.
Sgt. Shaun Hutt
January 20, 2004 - Durban, South Africa - Age 32
Sgt. Shaun Hutt died on 1/20/04 while in the line of duty as he tried to
investigate the killing of two KwaMashu police officers. The tragedy
unfolded when Hutt went to the hostel area at KwaMashu's A Section to
investigate the December killing of two police officers. He was in an
unmarked vehicle - a white Golf - with an informer, while his brother,
Inspector Warren Hutt was travelling behind in a dog unit vehicle. But
then, as they turned into the darkened road, three men suddenly opened
up on them. Eight shots were fired at them, with four high-caliber
rounds going through the Golf door. Two struck Hutt, one of them hitting
him in an artery. Despite what would prove to be fatal injuries, Hutt
continued returning fire at his attackers. The gunmen then fled and
Hutt's brother rushed him to Umhlanga Hospital where he was immediately
taken into surgery. Hutt had been shot in the abdomen. Hutt, who had
gone into surgery to have two bullets removed, died on the operating
table. Hutt was due to be married in a couple weeks to his fiancée,
Julie MacNamara. His K9 partner was PJ.
Officer Mario Umjamo Nelson
January 3, 2004 - Rialto,California - Age 31
Officer Mario Nelson, 31, was shot and killed in Rialto, California
on 1/3/04 when he came home from working the graveyard shift and
parked his cruiser in his garage. His neighbor John Van Uffelen, 67,
was reading the newspaper when he heard yelling and screaming at
Nelson's house. He then heard eight shots, followed by a short
pause, followed by two more shots. The sheriff's department got a
call at 7:14 a.m. about gunfire at the house. When deputies arrived
they found the garage door open and a Fontana police car in the
garage. His ex girlfriend, Antoinette Smith, 19, waited for him to
exit the cruiser and shot him multiple times and then killed herself
with one shot. A neighbor, John Van Uffelen, 67, saw a sheriff
deputy a month before breaking up a fight at 5:30 a.m. and when he
spoke Mario Nelson the next day he told his neighbor that if he
ever saw her again to call the sheriff’s department because she was
bugging him and interfering with his business. Nelson had broken up
with Smith in September and she had been on medication and was
depressed she was not with him around the holidays. Smith was a
teacher's aide in special education at Eisenhower High School in
Rialto. Recently had been accepted into Cal State San Bernardino and
planned to complete her teaching degree there. She and Nelson were
once engaged, and at one point, she had gone shopping for a wedding
gown. Officer Nelson was hired by the Fontana Police Department in
1999 and became a canine officer in June. Nelson was previously a
security officer with the Rialto Unified School District as well as
a Marine Corps reservist. Nelson had moved into the house less than
two years and Smith lived with him for a short time.
Pc Thomas Andrew Jackson
December 13, 2003 - South Yorkshire, UK - Age 46
While on duty following a League football
match, he was working with another dog handler, engaged in dispersing
large crowds of rival football fans in Barnsley Town Centre, when he
collapsed and died of a heart attack. Tommy had 27 years service with
South Yorkshire Police and was attached to the Operational Support
Services department as a dog handler working from Ecclesfield Police
Station. He was survived by his wife, a serving police officer, and two
sons aged 10 and 8 years.
Pc Gerald Michael Walker
January 9, 2003 - Nottingham, UK - Age 42
Pc Ged Walker, 42,
tried to arrest the driver of a stolen
taxi on January 7, 2003. The incident unfolded when David Andrew Parfitt, 25, a
former drug addicted to heroin and cocaine and
habitual criminal since the
age of 14 from Nottingham,
forced his way into a
woman's house in Bulwell, Nottingham, to call a taxi. When the taxi
arrived, Parfitt, ran to the vehicle and forced the driver into the
passenger seat. Pc Walker had been called to the scene and observed
Parfitt beginning to speed away. Pc Walker sprinted to the driver's door
and tried to grab the keys from the car's ignition. As Pc Walker and his
German shepherd Kai were pulled along St Albans Road in Bulwell.
Observers heard him screamed at Parfitt: "Stop it or you will kill me."
Parfitt accelerated to 30mph, dragging the officer and his dog 100 yards
as he swerved to try to throw them off. Eventually Pc Walker was flung
into a concrete bollard, suffering severe head injuries. Pc walker died
at Queen’s Medical Centre hospital two days later on January 9, 2003
at 6:45 p.m.
his K9 partner “Kai” survived. The taxi driver eventually halted the car
and Parfitt fled. Parfitt was arrested a day later when officers found
him hiding in a loft. Pc Walker joined the police cadets in 1976 and
joining the regular force 2 years later and serving in Hucknall. In 1987
he became a canine officer and often served in Mansfield Town when high
profile matches were played at Field Mill.
hundred people attended Pc Walkers funeral on January 24, 2003 at St.
Barnabas Cathedral in Nottingham.
The new Bulwell police station on
Coventry Road is named after Pc Walker and was officially opened by his
widow on May 7 2004.
He is survived by his wife Tracy, his daughter Rebecca, 13, and his son
Matt age 12. Canine Kai was given to the Walker family.
David Andrew Parfitt, a
dropout from school, had trouble with the law since the age of 14 years
old. In 1991 at the age of 14 he did bodily harm against a fellow school
pupil, two counts of criminal damage, threatening behavior, possessing
an offensive weapon and shoplifting. He was ordered to pay $44.47 and do
24 hours of community service. Fourteen months later in 1992 at the age
of 15 he was back in youth court for aggravated vehicle taking, a series
of driving offenses ( reckless driving, no insurance, and driving
without a license) burglary and theft of a cycle. He was sent to youth
offenders institution for four months. At the age of fifteen he was
known to drink as many as fifteen Budweisers a night and was also using
marijuana, LSD, amphetamines and benzodiazepines and sedative drugs as
valium. In 1993 at the age of 16 he was back in youth court for theft of
a cycle and ordered to pay $741.22. At the age of 16-17 in January of
1994 he was convicted again for burglary and theft of a home and failing
to surrender to bail and to attend 22 hours at a center. In September of
1994 he was convicted a second time for actual body harm when
unprovoked, punched his victim in the face several times causing
injuries requiring five stitches and again for aggravated vehicle taking
with driving offences of driving while disqualified and no insurance. He
was ordered to do 40 hours of community service and pay $ 222.36
compensation. In November of 1994 another series of driving offences (
two counts of driving while disqualified, two counts of driving without
insurance and a minor road traffic offence and the court sent him again
to a young offenders institution for five months and disqualifying him
from driving for two years. In November of 1995 at the age of 18 he was
back in court, but this time as an adult. He attempted to steal a
vehicle, obstructing the police, handling, driving while disqualified,
using a vehicle without insurance and failing to surrender to custody.
He was placed on probation for eighteen months. The first seven months
of his order was acceptable but there after failed and breach proceeding
were instituted in October of 1996. In January of 1997 the court was
informed he was complying with his order. However his conditional
discharge of one year was substituted by the magistrates for the
fourteen month probation order. Two months later in March of 1997 he was
back in court for failing to surrender to custody and breach of peace.
He was fined $111.00 and bound over for twelve months. Four months later
in July of 1997 he was back in court for criminal damage, threatening
behavior and breach of his binding over order. He was ordered to pay
compensation and ordered to sixty hours community service and probation
supervision for twelve months. In March of 1999 he was back in court for
twelve offences, eleven of them committed while on bail for breach of
the combination order imposed in July of 1997 and failing to appear in
court proceedings relating to that breach, for two offences of obtaining
property by deception, ( ordered products from mail order catalog using
a false name ) driving with excess alcohol, two counts of driving while
disqualified, taking a motor vehicle without consent of his place of
employment, failing to stop after an accident, two counts of driving
without insurance, criminal damage, resisting a Pc and breach of his
combination order and sent to prison for five months. In June of 1999
just after being released from prison, he was again sentenced to five
months in prison for driving while disqualified and with no insurance.
In May of 2000, he was convicted of affray, three counts of assault, and
assault with the intent of resisting arrest. He once again drove while
drunk, again crashed into a stationary vehicle, again fled the scene,
was arrested and taken to a hospital where he escaped custody and
initiated a violent confrontation with people at the hospital. One month
later he was back in court for driving while disqualified, no insurance
and failing to provide a specimen. Again he was sent to prison for four
months. On September 21, 2000, on being sentenced, he sought to escape
but was chased and apprehended.
Having been jailed for two
years on May 16, 2002 for robbing two women in the street, ages 70 and 51,
who had just picked up their state pensions. One of the women were
knocked to the ground and injured. He convinced the authorities
that he had kicked his four-year heroin and cocaine addiction and was
released four months later on September 11, 2002, under curfew, subject to drug testing. He was
meant to have been tested twice a week for the first 13 weeks. Failure
to attend on two occasions, or failing three consecutive tests or two
non-consecutive tests within a six-week period constituted a breach of
probation. In the following two months Parfitt, who has more than fifty
criminal convictions, missed seven appointments, and of nineteen drugs tests
he took, he failed ten. Once, he even called to say that he could not
make an appointment because he was too ill as a result of "heavy use of
heroin". A report highlighted a catalogue of mistakes by Probation
Service which led to Parfitt being on the run on the day of PC Walker's
death. Parfitt's prison release probation should have been revoked
earlier after he failed ten out of nineteen drug tests and Parfitt had
earlier admitted taking the taxi without the owner's consent, driving
while disqualified, theft and burglary. Parfitt failed a drug test on
September 20 for cocaine, October 14 he failed for cocaine, October 22
he failed for opiates, October 24 he failed for cocaine, October 29 he
failed for opiates, October 31 he failed for opiates, November 7, he
failed for cocaine, November 12 he failed for cocaine, November 14 he
failed for cocaine and on November 21 he failed for cocaine, all this
while on probation.
On December 11, 2004 a jury
found David Andrew Parfitt guilty in Birmingham Crown Court of manslaughter
in the death of Pc Ged Walker on a majority 10 to two verdict but
cleared him of murder. He was jailed for 12 years and given a
consecutive one-year sentence for other offences. Parfitt had been on
probation from a previous sentence for robberies from elderly women at
the time of PC Walker's death. Parfitt is up for parole in
October of 2009 after serving half his sentence.
The trial judge had recommended that
Parfitt serve at least two-thirds of his term but this is not legally
binding. Prisoners are automatically released after serving two-thirds
of their sentence but become eligible for parole after half of it is
completed in their country. Pc Walkers grieving widow, Tracy, is
fighting to keep her husband’s killer in jail.
Sgt. Daniel Dale Green
November 13, 2002 -
Tallahassee, Florida - Age 47
Sgt. Green, 47, was a
K-9 officer shot and killed on Nov. 13, 2002 while responding to a report of a home invasion robbery
just before 8:00 p.m. A report came in that an armed man
had bulled his way into a home on Melody Circle and was trying to rob
the two women inside.
Officers sped to the neighborhood but couldn't locate the street.
Green was the first to find it. When he approached the scene he observed a suspicious car and
called in the description of it before being ambushed and shot 6 times
with a 357,
including once in the head. With other officers
arriving, the shooter jumped in his car and fled. He led police and Leon
County sheriff's deputies on a chase that ended when he crashed into a
ditch on Sharer Road. Deputy Brian Pearson fired at him and the man
surrendered. At the time Sgt. Green was wearing his vest. He
was pronounced dead about one hour later at Tallahassee Memorial
Hospital at 9:21 p.m. Sgt. Green had been with the Tallahassee Police Department for 13 years
and his K-9 partner was Lux. Sgt. Green was an expert sniper also. Coy J. Evans, 33, is facing a
first degree murder charge for the slaying of Sgt. Green along with
two counts of armed robbery, armed burglary, kidnapping and possession
of a firearm by a convicted felon. He had just been released
June 30, 2002 after serving a five and a half years of a seven year prison sentence for
burglary and robbery with a firearm. Sgt Green is survived by his wife
three children Kristen, Will and Ryan, ages 20,15 &13. On the fifth anniversary of his death the
city's Water Utility donated 20 acres to the Tallahassee Police
Department and a K-9 training facility was named after him.
The 2,000 square foot building includes an
office, showers and a screened-in porch for washing the department’s
canines. Outside, there are gated areas for different types of
Evans' rap sheet dates
back to when he was 18, starting with a burglary charge. Over the years,
he racked up arrests for trespassing, driving without a license,
resisting an officer and marijuana possession - among other charges. The
charges grew more serious, and he eventually went to prison. Court and
police records detail his crimes. On Dec. 18, 1994, Evans accosted a man
in the 400 block of North Macomb Street and they wound up in a fight,
police reports show. As the victim tried to get back in his car, Evans
reached in and struck the man on his forehead with the butt of a
handgun, causing a cut that needed 11 stitches. On Nov. 13, 1995 -
exactly seven years before Green was shot - Evans held up two women with
a handgun inside a Joe Louis Street apartment, taking money and a
jacket. No one was hurt. On May 18, 1996, while he was out on bail
for the 1995 charge, Evans and another armed man robbed a Memphis Street
home with three adults and three small children inside, forcing them
into a bedroom. The robbers took several pieces of jewelry, including a
gold chain with a Mickey Mouse charm. Two months later, one of the
victims saw Evans and his then-girlfriend in a local grocery store and
recognized Evans from the robbery, according to reports. The girlfriend
was wearing a chain with a Mickey Mouse charm. On Dec. 5, 1996, court
records show, Evans offered no-contest pleas in all those cases before
Circuit Judge J. Hall Jr., now retired. The no-contest pleas mean Evans
did not admit guilt but chose not to defend the charges in court; the
judge found him guilty anyway. Evans, charged with aggravated battery in
the fight, pleaded to misdemeanor assault and was sentenced to time
served - 60 days in the county jail. Facing a maximum life sentence for
the robberies if convicted at trial, Evans instead agreed to serve seven
years in prison, according to the plea form. Hall gave him 215 days
credit for time served. Evans entered state prison Jan. 9, 1997, and he
was released June 30, having served about 5½ years.
Number of jurors for
each verdict: 9-3 for life. On September 8, 2004, Coy J. Evans was
convicted of 1st degree murder, burglary, armed kidnapping, armed
robbery and fleeing and eluding law enforcement in the shooting death of
Tallahassee police Sgt. Dale Green. On September 10, 2004 Coy
J. Evans was sentenced to life imprisonment without the possibility of
1.5 hours of deliberation.
Officer Bill Faus Jr.
August 26, 2002 - Elkhart, Indiana - Age 37
Bill Faus Jr., 37, died August 26, 2002 at 7:40 a.m. at
home, five months after he was diagnosed with cancer. Less than a year
before his death, Bill Jr. had become a master trainer for the North
American Police Work Dog Association, joining his father to become the
only father-son master trainers in the United States. Bill Jr. joined
the Elkhart Police Department in 1987 and in his earlier years as a boy
he was in the cadet program. He later followed his father's lead into
the department's K-9 Unit and a division he was in charge of at the
time of his death. Officer Faus's K9 partner was "King". His father,
Capt. Bill Faus Sr.
is one of the founding
fathers of the North American Police Work Dog Association who has served
that organization as a State Coordinator for the State of Indiana, a
Trustee and elected to the position of National Treasurer. His Father
was also selected as the state treasurer
for the Indiana Police Work Dog Association and serves as Master Trainer
and is a Certified K-9 Instructor through the Indiana Law Enforcement
Training Board and runs his business "Faus K-9 Specialties, Inc.".
Bill Faus Jr. leaves behind his wife, Lorene , three sons, Zachary J., Nicholas
A., Blake J., all of Elkhart; two stepsons, Matthew M. Rose, Brent R.
Sgt. Scott Arner
January 4, 2002 - Jasper
County, Missouri - Age 43
Sgt. Scott Arner, 43, a resident
of Neosho, died on January 4, 2002 at about 6:00 p.m. during an
investigative dive that was mostly ice covered and 30 – 40 feet deep.
Arner and others were searching the ice covered water for a body during
an investigation into a possible homicide when the veteran deputy failed
to come to the surface and drowned. He was pulled from the water by
divers and taken to a Joplin hospital, but efforts to revive him failed.
Arner was declared dead at 7:14 p.m. at St. John’s Regional Medical
Center in Joplin where he was taken by medical helicopter after the
accident. Arner’s police dog, Magnum, sat on the floor near the family
during the service. As Arner’s coffin was carried to the hearse in
front of the church, more than 30 police dogs and their handlers from
departments across Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma had lined the sidewalk
on each side of the entrance. Sergeant Arner was also a Police Dog
Trainer for the Missouri Police Canine Association and the North
American Police Work Dog Association. Sergeant Arner had been with the
Jasper County Sheriff's Department in Missouri for 13 years. Sgt
Arner's trusted K-9 partner "Dunja", was a dual purpose Belgian Malinois
and she was laid to rest with Scott.
Officer Ron Jones
December 26, 2001 -
Prentiss, Mississippi - AGE 29
Jones, 29, was shot and killed December 26, 2001, while attempting to
serve a drug warrant with Pearl River Basin Narcotics Task Force on Mary
Street approximately 2340 hours with seven other officers. The reason for the
raid was because Officer Jones was informed by a confidential informant
that there was a large quantity of marijuana spotted in the apartment.
Officer Jones entered the rear door of a residence and was shot as he
made entrance to a bedroom that the suspect was in. Cory Maye fired at
Officer Jones three times with a stolen Larson .380 caliber handgun. The
shot struck him in the abdomen below his vest. He succumbed to his
wounds while being transported to a local hospital in a patrol car. The
suspect, Corey Maye, 21, lived at the apartment for less than two months
with his girlfriend. Maye contends that he was asleep in his living
room which was dark when the raid occurred while his infant daughter,
asleep in the bedroom.
Her mother—Chenteal Longino, Maye’s girlfriend—had left for her job
on the night shift at the Marshall Durbin chicken plant in Hattiesburg,
more than an hour away.
was uncomfortable in his new home, and
had expressed concerns to his mother about the seedy neighborhood
surrounding it but he promised to stick it out until after the holidays. As the raid commenced, one member of the Task
Force broke down the outside back door and Officer Jones who did not
have his gun drawn, charged in. Maye contends he shot officer Maye
fearing for his life and the safety of his daughter and did not know
they were police officers until after firing his gun and then he heard
them announce that they were police entering his apartment. He then
placed his gun on the floor and was apprehended at the scene without
autopsy of Officer Jones showed the bullet passed through his abdominal
wall perforating the small intestines in four locations and went through
Officer Jones had been with the Prentiss Police
Department in Mississippi for five years. His father was chief of police
at the time of the shooting.
Cory entered an innocent plea at the trial and had no
previous arrest record. A jury of 8 women and 4 men found
Cory Maye guilty of capital
murder on January 23, 2004, after 5 hours of deliberation and sentenced
to death by lethal injection and is currently on death row in
Mississippi. A hearing on whether Maye, now 25,
deserves a new trial was set for June 20, 2006 and then postponed until
September 21, 2006.
September 21, 2006, Maye's death sentence was
overturned by Judge Michael Eubanks. There
are three possible actions that the current presiding judge could take.
He could refer the case directly to resentencing; or he could override
the jury's verdict and declare Maye not guilty or he could schedule the
case for retrial. On December 29, 2006,
At the new sentencing trial he was sentenced to life in
prison without the possibility of parole.
PC Roger Debattista
November 12, 2001 -Ta' Farzina Qormi, Malta - Age 34
PC Roger Debattista , 34, who was a
canine officer working overtime, was shot and killed on November 12,
2001 during a bank hold-up at 10:45 a.m. while he closing the front
doors of the bank he was guarding in Ta` Farzina, Qormi when he saw
three armed robbers rushed towards him and he realized the bank was
going to be robbed. Two of the robbers had their heads covered in
women`s tights. One wore a balaclava, and the other had a carnival
mask. Debattista was shot twice through the glass doors at point
blank range at the Bank of Valletta branch. with the second being
the fatal shot. Debattista was hit on the lower left-hand side of
the body and the shot penetrated his lungs. PC Debattista was rushed
to St Luke`s Hospital where he was operated upon immediately but he
died soon afterwards. After shooting the policeman, the robbers
rushed inside the bank. As one robber held up the four customers and
seven employees inside the bank, the other two men grabbed as much
cash as they could and then ran off in a waiting getaway car which
was a red Lada Samara. The car had been stolen from Cospicua last
month. Before they left the bank one of the robbers took away the
policeman`s weapon. They also took a security bag containing what is
known as "bait money" and drove off, tires screeching, to Summer
Street two blocks away. The "bait money" releases indelible ink on
the bank notes inside it, making the notes useless. The red Lada
Samara was found abandoned with its doors open two blocks away from
the bank. Both front seats of the car were folded forward. Tire
marks were found in front of the car, indicating that the robbers
had another getaway car parked there. A black carnival mask was
found close to a low wall where the getaway vehicle was parked. A
five-shot Luigi Franchi repeater shotgun, which had its registration
number erased and which had the butt wrapped in tape, was also found
on the ground. It was thrown over the low wall. Stained money with
the red indelible ink was left in the car. The notes were scattered
on the floorboard, on the front seats and on the dashboard. The
police said the notes were stained when the robbers forced open the
security bag, presumably to share the money. The robbers were
eventually found to be Andy Calleja, 23, Mario Borg, 35, Ian Galdes,
22, and Mark Falzon, 26. A monument to police constable Roger
Debattista was unveiled in Qormi, close to where the bank used to be
located. The monument, featuring a bust of Mr Debattista, was set up
on the initiative of Qormi council, the bank and the police. PC
Debattista has already had a street on November 16, 2007 and a wing
of police HQ named after him. He has previously served in Mobile
Squad and the Corradino Correctional Facility. PC Debattista as an
exemplary policeman who joined the corps on April 12, 1986 and
served for almost 16 years. Debattista was given a hero’s funeral in
which thousands of people attended. Many senior officers and members
of the AFM`s bomb disposal unit, who had often worked alongside PC
Debattista attended to honor him who worked in the dog section for
twelve years and
whose dog was trained to sniff for explosives. The hearse was
escorted to Addolorata Cemetery by police motorcyclists and
policemen in ceremonial uniform carried the coffin, draped in the
police flag, to the police grave where a guard of honor stood to
attention as a detachment fired three rounds in a final salute
before the body was laid to rest. PC Roger Debattista, who
posthumously received the Midalja Ghall-Qlubija. He was married to
Simone and had three daughters, Kelsey, 8, Shanice, 6, and
The robbers were charged with robbing a bank, holding several people
against their will, causing damage to the bank, stealing John Paul
Cesare`s car on October 30, stealing registration plates of a car
belonging to Giovanni Borg, handling stolen property, carrying a
firearm and ammunition at the time of the commission of a crime,
keeping a firearm and ammunition without a license, and firing a gun
within 200 meters of a residential area. Admitting to their numerous
charges at the start of their trial, Mr. Borg and Mr. Galdes were
jailed for seven years and Mr. Borg for five. Mr. Justice Joe Galea
Debono delivered the sentences. Mr. Calleja, who was identified as
the murderer, was handed a life sentence.
Calleja admitted killing the police officer
during the hold-up. Despite this admission, presiding Mr Justice
Joseph Galea Debono said that he was not to be shown clemency.
Calleja registered his admission almost three-and-a-half years after
the crime was committed. The judge said “he delayed his plea until
the final moment,” and therefore this could not be considered as an
early guilty plea. Mr Justice Galea Debono ruled that Calleja could
not benefit from a reduced jail term and sentenced him to life
imprisonment. On 10 June 2004, an appeals court confirmed the life
sentence for Calleja. The court, presided by Chief Justice Vincent
De Gaetano and composed of Mr Justice Joseph Filletti and Mr Justice
David Scicluna, said the court had to send out a clear message to
society that such crimes cannot be condoned. They were dealing with
the cold-blooded murder of a police constable, on duty during a
hold-up, who did his best to protect the bank’s staff and clients,
the court said in its 17-page judgement.
During the trial an uproar
occurred in the court room as Constable Debattista's relatives
hurled abuse at the four men which had to be controlled by many
Deputy Kody Hellyer Snodgrass
October 17, 2001 -
Lake County, Florida – Age 24
Deputy Kody Snodgrass, age 24, was a Deputy for
the Lake County Sheriff’s Office and handled police bloodhounds for the
department when he was killed in a motorcycle accident, while off duty,
on October 17, 2001. The parents of Kody Snodgrass, Duke and Angie
Snodgrass, are the founders of the Kody Snodgrass Memorial Foundation
Inc. that is dedicated to providing law enforcement with bloodhounds
trained for police work free of charge. Angie Snodgrass is the chairman
for the foundation. The foundation breeds, raises and trains registered
bloodhounds for donation to the law enforcement community. The
foundation, also known as 832 K-9’S Deputy Dogs is dedicated to the
memory of Deputy Kody H. Snodgrass. Deputy Snodgrass badge number was
832 and was incorporated into the foundation name. The original funding
for the foundation came from Kody Snodgrass’ life insurance policy and
continues today through donations, both public and private. Deputy
Sheriff Snodgrass was a 3 1/2 year veteran of the Sheriff's Office and
was assigned to the Sheriff's Tactical Unit as a Bloodhound K9 handler.
Trooper Lloyd Aragon
August 1, 2001 - New
Mexico State Police - Age 37
Trooper Aragon, 37,
was struck by a suspect's vehicle and killed on August 1, 2001 while
laying stop sticks at approximately 0730 hours attempting to
apprehend a suspect driving a stolen vehicle during a pursuit on
I-40 near Grants, New Mexico. The incident started when two
brothers went to the Grants Wal-Mart Super center about 7 a.m. and
allegedly took some 40 boxes of Actifed, worth more than $300, in an
apparent shoplifting heist. An alert store employee followed the
brothers to the parking lot and wrote down the license plate number
of the Toyota pickup truck they got into it and drove out of the
parking lot. The two turned right on Santa Fe Avenue and were
heading west on the street when Grants Police got a call from
Wal-Mart about the reported shoplifting and a description of the
truck and license plate. The dispatcher ran the plates and it came
back stolen, adding that the truck was taken in Albuquerque, but he
did not know when it was stolen. An all-points alert went out on the
police radio, at which time Grants Police Sgt. Mike Trujillo spotted
the truck and tried to stop it. The driver of the truck, Zachariah
Craig, made a U-turn in the 1000 block of Santa Fe Avenue. One of
the occupants, Aron Craig, jumped out of the truck and ran toward
railroad tracks. Police took him into custody a short time later and
brought Aron Craig to the Grants Police Station. The chase was on
when Zachariah Craig sped off to the 85 Mile Marker on-ramp to
Interstate 40 with Trujillo in pursuit where speeds reached well
over 100 mph. Aragon and his partner State Police Officer William
Cunningham, were in plain clothes and en route to a federal court to
testify in a drug case when they heard the radio traffic about the
pursuit and decided to lend a hand. Aragon and Cunningham were far
in front of the chase when they stopped their patrol car in the
center median and laid down stop sticks to puncture the tires of the
Toyota pick up. As the speeding truck neared Mile Marker 126 the
driver swerved off the road into the center median to avoid the
strips and slammed head-on into Aragon, killing him instantly. After
hitting Aragon, Zachariah Craig drove through the center median,
crossed the two westbound lanes of interstate traffic, and ran up a
highway on-ramp from the State Highway 6 overpass where lost control
of the truck. He got out of the truck and ran, but two state police
officers and a Grants Police officer, Mike Trujillo got out of their
units, ran him down and arrested him. Trooper Aragon had been with
the New Mexico State Police for eight years and had been in law
enforcement for an additional five years. He was a member of the New
Mexico State Police Canine Team. Approximately twenty seven hundred
people attended his funeral. White doves were released at his
funeral and he received a 21 gun salute and a bagpiper played Amazing
Grace. A police helicopter
also made a fly-by overhead. He is survived by his wife Monica,
his son Lloyd Jr. 11, and his daughter Adrianna age 4 was turning 5
in a few days. His K-9 "Barry" was
retired and lives with his mother Veroniza "Bernice" Aragon. On
December 12, 2006 a roadside memorial service was held to honor
Aragon and a marble marker was placed in the exact spot he was
struck and killed. The marble stone featured Aragon's silhouette on
the left and K-9 Barry's on the right. The ceremony was attended by
his family and many K-9 officers.
DeWitt Craig was charged with 1st degree
murder which carries the death penalty in
New Mexico. Craig
eventually pleaded guilty but mentally ill to second-degree murder
thereby avoiding a possible death sentence. In early of 2006,
Craig, 23, pleaded guilty to murdering
Aragon. On September
1, 2006, Judge Louis McDonald sentenced Craig to 20 years plus five
years of supervised probation and is serving time in the state
Department of Corrections mental health unit.
Deputy William Robert Hunter
July 26, 2001 - Butte Copunty, California - Age 26
Deputy William R. Hunter, 26, and Lieutenant Leonard B. Estes, 61,
were ambushed and fatally wounded on, July 26, 2001, as they entered a
cabin in the Inskip area of Paradise ridge in California and were met
with a barrage of gunfire. Hunter died instantly. Estes returned fire
and fatally wounded the suspect, Richard Gerald Bracklow, 46, before
succumbing to his wounds. Hunter took the original report of an assault
and theft of weapons at the Magalia substation and asked for cover.
Estes, en route to an internal affairs interview, was nearby and told
dispatch he would back up Hunter. He reportedly pulled to the side and
put on his bulletproof vest. Hunter interviewed Bob Duffey, 89,
regarding a heated argument he had with Bracklow, over rent money
owed to Duffey. When Estes arrived the officers proceeded to Bracklow's
residence. Estes and Hunter had radioed dispatchers shortly after 6 p.m.
that they would "attempt to make contact with the subject." It was their
last transmission. They entered the dimly-lit cabin but barely made it
past the threshold. Bracklow shot Hunter, who was in the lead, three
times in the head. Hunter was unable to get off a shot. Estes emptied
six rounds from his personal .45-caliber handgun, striking Bracklow
three times in the chest area and grazing the suspect's shoulder with a
fourth shot. Lieutenant Estes' weapon was found with the seventh round
remaining and had been jammed when it was struck by one of the suspect's
Estes was struck four
times in the arm, chest and head as Bracklow emptied his 9mm, Glock
semi-automatic handgun. Deputy Hunter and Lt. Estes and Bracklow were
only two to three feet apart during the gun-battle fatal exchange. When
dispatch was unable to reach either officer, additional units were sent
by the California Highway Patrol. When they arrived 45 minutes later,
they located both cruisers parked in front of the small cabin. The
sheriff's department's SWAT team was then called out. After firing tear
gas, entry was made into the home where the bodies of Deputy Hunter,
Lieutenant Estes, and the suspect were located.
Over five thousand people attended the funerals for both officers
and more than 100 police dogs also attended. Outside, the two deputies
received the tribute of a 21-gun salute as the Honor Guard put the
coffins into hearses Taps were played A squadron of five helicopters,
two from BCSO, and one each from CDF, California Highway Patrol and
Enloe Medical Center, flew over the church. One of the BCSO helicopters
veered out of formation in honor of officers lost in battle. Deputy
Hunter had been with the Butte County Sheriff’s office for three years
and Lt. Estes had been in Law Enforcement for 30 years. Deputy Hunter
just became a canine officer a few weeks before his death. Deputy Hunter
and his wife, Holly, were to have celebrated their first wedding
anniversary in a couple of weeks. He is survived by his wife Holly and
his German shepherd partner named "Ilo". K-9 Ilo attended the funeral
service. The Sheriff's Office has allowed Hunter's wife to keep the dog
as her pet. Memorial donations in the name of Bill Hunter may be made by
check payable to the Deputy Hunter Memorial Fund and mailed to the
Newton Bracewell Funeral Home, 680 Camellia Way, Chico, CA 95926.
Donations to the Hunter fund will be used to provide scholarships to men
and women embarking on a career in law enforcement at Butte College.
Corporal James Brian Moulson
January 3, 2001 - Jerome
County, Idaho - Age 30
Corporal Moulson, 30, and
Corporal Phillip Anderson, 23, were both canine officers shot and killed on January 3, 2001
while they were serving a narcotics search warrant at the home on a
suspected drug dealer at 8:30 p.m. Both
deputies, who were wearing bulletproof vests at the time.
The officers took positions outside Williams'
home, preparing to serve the warrant. Corporal Moulson knocked on the door and announced the service of the
warrant. When no response came, Corporal Moulson rammed the door.
Corporal Anderson entered first and was met with gunfire from the suspect inside
who shot Corporal Anderson
in the head at the time of entry with a .44 caliber handgun. Corporal
Anderson immediately shot the suspect, George Timothy Williams, 47,
but Williams also fired killing Corporal Anderson. Corporal Moulson
engaged Williams at close quarters, shooting him several times. Williams
also continued to fire and shot and killed Corporal Moulson. When
Williams emerged from the house he was confronted with Sheriff Weaver
and undersheriff Nunnally. Undersheriff Nunnally stepped between
Williams and Sheriff Weaver and fired at Williams, causing him to dive
for cover and the suspect was killed during the gun battle. It was later
determined that it was Corporal Anderson who had fired the fatal round. About 50 K-9 Officers and their dogs attended a graveside service, which included a
21 gun salute and taps, punctuated by barking. Moulson and
Anderson’s K-9’S, Chug and Cruiser, sat quietly at the memorial service,
beside the flag draped caskets of their masters. Both officers
were members of the Idaho Police Canine Association. About 50 K-9 Officers and their dogs attended a graveside service, which included a
21 gun salute and taps, punctuated by barking. Moulson and Anderson’s
K-9’S, Chug and Cruiser, sat quietly at the memorial service, beside the
flag draped coffins of their masters. Both officers were members of the
Idaho Police Canine Association. Corporal Moulson had been with the
Jerome County Sheriff's Department in Idaho for four years. More
than 3000 attended their funeral. He is
survived by his wife Amy, and his nine-month-old son Derek.
On May 18, 2007, Idaho Governor Otter awarded the
Medal of Honor to Corporal James Brian Moulson.
Corporal Phillip Charles Anderson
January 3, 2001 - Jerome
County, Idaho - Age 23
Corporal Phillip Anderson,
23, and Corporal Moulson, 30, were both canine officers shot and killed on January 3, 2001
while they were serving a narcotics search warrant at the home
on a suspected drug dealer at 8:30 p.m. Both deputy canine
officers, who were wearing bulletproof vests at the time. The officers
took positions outside Williams' home, preparing to serve the warrant.
Corporal Moulson knocked on the door and announced the service of the
warrant. When no response came, Corporal Moulson rammed the door.
Corporal Anderson entered first and was met with gunfire from the suspect inside
who shot Corporal Anderson
in the head at the time of entry with a .44 caliber handgun. Corporal
Anderson immediately shot the suspect, George Timothy Williams, 47,
but Williams also fired killing Corporal Anderson. Corporal Moulson
engaged Williams at close quarters, shooting him several times. Williams
also continued to fire and shot and killed Corporal Moulson. When
Williams emerged from the house he was confronted with Sheriff Weaver
and undersheriff Nunnally. Undersheriff Nunnally stepped between
Williams and Sheriff Weaver and fired at Williams, causing him to dive
for cover and the suspect was killed during the gun battle. It was later
determined that it was Corporal Anderson who had fired the fatal round. About 50 K-9 Officers and their dogs attended a graveside service, which included a
21 gun salute and taps, punctuated by barking. Moulson and Anderson’s
K-9’S, Chug and Cruiser, sat quietly at the memorial service, beside the
flag draped caskets of their masters. Both officers were members of the
Idaho Police Canine Association. Corporal Anderson had been with the
Jerome County Sheriff's Department in Idaho for two years. More than 3000 attended
their funeral. Corporal Phillip Anderson was unmarried at the time of his death.
On May 18, 2007, Idaho Governor Otter awarded the Medal of Honor to
Corporal Phillip Charles Anderson.
Officer John A. Ayello
September 8, 2000 -
Hamburg, Pennsylvania - Age 53
Officer Ayello, 53, died
September 8, 2000 at approximately 2100 hours when he suffered a heart
attack while making an arrest in taking a violent subject into custody.
Officer Ayello and another officer had responded to a domestic
disturbance call involving a suspect with warrants. As the suspect was
being handcuffed, Officer Ayello suffered the heart attack. He was flown
to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead. Officer Ayello had
been in law enforcement for 21 years and had founded several an anti
drug youth group in the area called Hooked on Fishing, Not Drugs. He
served with the Hamburg Police Department in PA. The K-9 Officer John
Ayello Memorial Award was established by the Pennsylvania Police K-9
Association to honor the memory of Officer Ayello who founded this
Organization. The purpose of this Award is to offer financial assistance
to high school seniors who will be pursuing a career in a field related
to law enforcement. Officer Ayello was a master trainer, handler and
breeder of Police K-9's. John trained many police K-9's for departments
along the east coast and conducted seminars for police dogs in Canada. John handled K9 Moonraker,
a bloodhound, which was Hamburg’s first police dog. John also handled K9 Ginger,
a rottweiler in 1980 with the Hamburg Police Department and later K9 Roscoe and
K9 Romeo who were also rottweilers. John also worked K9 security with K9 Kane,
a Doberman. K9 Romeo was John’s working police K9 at the time of his death and
attended church services for John. He is survived by his wife, Beryl, and three
grown children, Michele 30, John II 29, and Ralph 23.
Memorial Contributions may
be sent to: American Heart Association, 40 Berkshire Court, Wyomissing,
PA 19610 or American Diabetes Association, 2045 West Gate Drive, suite
302, Bethlehem, PA 18017.
Officer Justin Thomas Cain
July 23, 2000 - LaGrange,
Georgia - Age 25
Patrolman Cain, 25,
succumbed to injuries sustained five months earlier when his patrol car
struck a concrete pylon and a tree. He died on July 23, 2000. He was on
a lunch break at the time when his vehicle accelerated, for unknown
reasons, through a shopping center parking lot and struck the pylon.
Patrolman Cain had been with the Lagrange Police Department in GA. for
two years. He was a Military MP for five years.
He leaves behind his K9 partner "Charo".
Senior Constable Norman James Watt
July 21, 2000 - Queensland, Australia - Age 33
Constable Norman J. Watt, 33, was shot and killed on July 21, 2000. He
was left to die alone in the darkness after he was ambushed while
attending a siege at an isolated property outside Rockhampton. Watt, a
Rockhampton dog squad officer, was fatally shot at point-blank range
with a .303 rifle by Cooper Alton Downs, 58, an air force officer,
hiding in bushes in the front yard of his property. Officers were forced
to abandon their fallen colleague where he lay bleeding from a gunshot
wound which had pierced an artery in his groin. He died soon after. It
was three hours before police could reach Constable Watt, after having
commandeered a heavily armoured vehicle from Rockhampton jail. The
gunman, believed to be a former RAAF serviceman, barricaded himself
inside the house for seven hours before surrendering shortly after 5am
as police from the Special Emergency Response Team arrived from
Brisbane. Police had been responding to a domestic dispute at the
property, during which shots had been fired, and had been setting up a
cordon and entering into negotiations just after 9.30pm when Constable
Watt was ambushed. It is believed the gunman had fired several shots at
a male friend after an argument erupted at the house earlier. Officers
attending the siege had all been wearing bulletproof vests and had
followed procedure, but had been unaware the man had left the house.
Constable Norm Watt’s K9 partner “Zeus” was not injured.
On may 22, 2003, after
a week of evidence the Supreme Court heard Cooper had been drinking and
was on medication. The court was told before Cooper fired shots, he had
become upset and recalled he had been given a white feather as a sign of
cowardice while a peacekeeper years before. The twelve member jury took
almost five hours to find Cooper guilty for the murder of Senior
Constable Norman Watt. Justice Peter Dutney sentenced Cooper to life in
Corporal Ferris Edward
July 10, 2000 - Camden,
South Carolina - Age 36
Corporal Catoe, 36, served
the Camden Police Department for 8 years in South Carolina. He was
killed on July 10, 2000 after being involved in an automobile accident.
Corporal Catoe’s cruiser, a 1994 Ford Taurus, broad sided a truck which
had entered an intersection after running a stop sign. He was
transported to a local hospital where he died approximately 30 minutes
later. Corporal Catoe's canine was also injured in the accident. He
is survived by his wife Sheri and his son Ryan.
Officer Jeff Lynn Azuar
April 12, 2000 - Vallejo,
California - Age 50
Azuar, 50, was shot and killed on April 12, 2000 after he and another
officer attempted to serve an arrest warrant on Joseph Teitgen, 34, for
failing to serve a 90-day jail sentence on a grand theft conviction and
weapons violations. The incident occurred at 1430 hours at 2039
Tennessee Street. Azuar received the call to assist in Teitgen's arrest
while he was filling in on an early shift. The officers found the
suspect who was a carpet layer, hiding in a garage of the residence
after Joseph Teitgen's wife let the officers into the home. At the time
she was with her 3 year old daughter and her 2 sons were on the way home
from school. The suspect began physically resisting arrest and Teitgen
broke free of Officer Wilcox, tried to flee up a staircase and fired a
.357 revolver three times. One of the shots struck Azuar, who was
pursuing Teitgen up the stairs, in the head. A third officer who had
arrived on scene, Sgt Larry Rogers, returned fire and seriously wounded
the suspect in the chest. Officer Azuar was transported to Sutter -
Solano Hospital where he was pronounced dead. His K-9 A.J. was waiting
outside the home in his police cruiser when Officer Azuar was shot. He
had been a canine handler since 1993. His first canine, Rondo, was
stabbed to death in the line of duty in 1997. Close to 100 K-9 officers
from around the state sat with their K-9 partners at their feet on
Corbus Field at the Vallejo High School where funeral services were held
for Azuar on Tuesday, April 18. They were a vivid reminder of how much
he loved being a dog handler. More than 4,000 local residents and law
enforcement personnel filled the high school's track field to grieve and
pay their last respects to the beloved police officer slain in the line
of duty. Friends say Azuar was deeply connected to his community,
recognized by children from his many visits to schools with his dogs, a
friend to his neighbors and a true community police officer who
befriended local business owners and who would return weeks after an
initial call to check up on people he had helped. The ceremony ended
with seven police helicopters flying overhead in Missing Man formation
and nine doves being released. The doves followed the path of the lone
helicopter. Capt. Tom Hauser played the bagpipes while the American flag
was ceremoniously folded and Chief Nichelini handed it to Azuar's
daughter. A badge with his badge number was then placed around Azuar's
K-9 partner, A.J.'s, neck. After the service, hundreds of police cars,
fire trucks and ambulances from around the state snaked through Vallejo
toward the Skyview Memorial Cemetery where the interment took place. His
first police dog, Rondo, an 8-year-old German shepherd who had been his
partner for 4 ½ years, was stabbed to death in July 1997 by a suspect in
a hit-and-run accident. The dog died in Azuar's arms. Azuar participated
in the K-9 Police Olympics placing third in his division. He and his
K-9s were known throughout the City of Vallejo and known for their
visits to the schools and organizations throughout Solano County.
Officer Azuar had been with the Vallejo Police Department in California
for 21 years and is survived by his 25 year old daughter, Amanda. The
Vallejo Police Officers' Association has set up a scholarship fund for
Azuar's 6-month-old granddaughter, Ashlee Geller. Donations may be made
to the Ashlee Geller Scholarship Fund care of the Vallejo Police
Officers' Association, P.O. Box 4218, 301 Wallace Street, Vallejo, CA
a lengthy criminal history. At one time Teitgen had served as a drug
informant in Napa in an attempt to win leniency at sentencing in a check
fraud case. Teitgen's criminal history began in 1986 when he was
arrested for spouse abuse and carrying a concealed weapon in public. In
1991, Teitgen was arrested in Solano County for carrying a concealed
weapon, grand theft and auto theft. He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor.
In 1993, he was convicted of grand theft, and served 30 days in jail,
with three years' probation. Later, four bench warrants were issued
against him for failing to comply with terms of his probation. In July,
1999 he was arrested for grand theft in Fairfield, CA. Teitgen's first
murder trial in 2003, which carried a possible death penalty, ended in a
hung jury after nine days of deliberations. In the first trial they
convicted Teitgen of the attempted murder charge of Officer Douglas
Wilcox who had wrestled with the defendant, but deadlocked on the first
degree murder charge.
The second trial convicted Teitgen on
March 9, 2004. The jury consisted of 6 men and 6 women and deliberated
less than 10 hours. Teitgen was found guilty of first degree murder of
an on-duty police officer and attempted
murder for trying to kill Sgt. Larry Rogers who shot Teitgen in the
chest during the struggle after Officer Azure was shot. Jurors also
found that Teitgen was armed and did use a firearm in the commission of
the crime and that the killing occurred as a result of Teitgen trying to
evade arrest. Teitgen was sentenced May 7, 2004 to life in prison
without the possibility of parole.