Police Officer II Roberto C. Sanchez
Los Angeles Police Department, California
End of Watch: Saturday, May 3, 2014
Tour of Duty: 6 years
Badge Number: 39618
Cause of Death: Vehicular assault
Date of Incident: May 3, 2014
Weapon Used: Automobile
Suspect Info: Apprehended
Agency Contact Information
Chief Charlie Beck
Los Angeles Police Department
100 West 1st Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: (213) 485-3586
Police Officer Roberto Sanchez was killed when his patrol car was struck by a vehicle while on patrol.
Officer Sanchez and his partner were on patrol in the Harbor City section of Los Angeles. They were following a vehicle on Anaheim Street, attempting to conduct a traffic stop. Their vehicle was struck by a SUV as he made a turn at President Avenue while following the other vehicle. Both officers were trapped in the vehicle and Officer Sanchez’s partner was unable to reach his radio to call for assistance. He utilized his mobile phone and called 911.
Both officers were removed from the vehicle by responding emergency units. They were taken to a local hospital where Officer Sanchez died from his injuries.
The driver of the SUV fled the scene on foot but was apprehended a short time later.
Officer Sanchez had served with the Los Angeles Police Department for six years.
HARBOR CITY (CBSLA.com) — Authorities say one of two police officers, who were injured in a hit-and-run collision in Harbor City on Saturday morning, has died.
The fatal accident happened about 3:45 a.m. Saturday at Anaheim Street, near President Avenue.
“At first, I heard a car speeding around. He was doing doughnuts or something like that,” said Daron Sizer, a witness. “Like ten minutes later, and that’s when you hear all the sirens coming out of nowhere.”
“The collision was so violent they weren’t able to go to their police radios. They had to phone the station via their cellphones,” LAPD Lt. John Pasquariello told KNX 1070’s Ed Mertz.
According to investigators, the officers were on routine patrol when they began following a white Chevy Camaro that was allegedly traveling at a high rate of speed.
“They followed that vehicle for a short distance. That vehicle made a U-turn and our officers subsequently made a U-turn. When they made that U-turn, the police vehicle was collided into by a Chevy Tahoe,” said Los Angeles police Cmdr. Andrew Smith.
“The driver of that Chevy Tahoe fled. An individual that we believed involved in that has been detained,” the commander said. He was transported to an area hospital as were the officers. His condition was not known. Cmdr. Smith said the driver of the Camaro also fled.
“The latest information, unfortunately, is that one of the officers in this collision has passed away at the hospital,” said Cmdr. Smith.
At last word, the second officer was in critical, but stable condition. Police said he sustained a broken jaw, among other injuries. His identity was withheld but he was believed to be best friends with the deceased.
“It’s another terrible tragedy for our department. Three officers now killed in traffic collisions in just the past couple of months. It’s tough for all of us,” the commander added.
Police identified the officer killed as Roberto Sanchez. Sanchez had been with the force for about six years.
“I am deeply saddened by the death of LAPD Officer Roberto Sanchez. Officer Sanchez died a hero, but that does not lessen the blow to his family and fellow officers,” Mayor Eric Garcetti said in a statement. “This third loss of an officer in the line of duty in just two months is a stark and tragic reminder of the dangers our first responders face every day. It is with a heavy heart that I am again ordering the city’s flags to half staff.”
Chief Beck said Officer Sanchez is survived by his wife.
Beck said the department also lost a 35-year veteran named George Nagata late Saturday night in an unrelated incident.
“George fell ill on duty, was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to a heart condition,” Beck said. “So last night, two Los Angeles police officers died. One in a tragic hit-and-run collision, and the other, due to a heart condition.”
The cause of the crash remains under investigation.