Police Officer Vernell Brown, Jr. New Orleans Police Department, Louisiana End of Watch: Friday, July 17, 2015

Police Officer Vernell Brown, Jr. | New Orleans Police Department, LouisianaNew Orleans Police Department, Louisiana

Police Officer Vernell Brown, Jr.

New Orleans Police Department, Louisiana
End of Watch: Friday, July 17, 2015

Biographical Info

Age: 47
Tour of Duty: 17 years
Badge Number: Not available

Incident Details

Cause of Death: Struck by vehicle
Date of Incident: July 12, 2015
Weapon Used: Not available
Suspect Info: Not available

Agency Contact Information

Superintendent Michael Harrison
New Orleans Police Department
715 South Broad Street
New Orleans, LA 70119
Phone: (504) 826-2828

Police Officer Vernell Brown succumbed to injuries sustained five days earlier when he was struck by a car on U.S. 90, on the I-10 East split, while investigating a separate car fire.
He was training two police recruits at the scene when two other vehicles were involved in a crash. One of the vehicles then veered off the road and struck Officer Brown. He was transported to a local hospital where he remained in a coma until succumbing to his injuries.
Officer Brown had served with the New Orleans Police Department for 17 years.

New Orleans Police Officer Vernell Brown Jr. was a soft-spoken and humble man, skilled at bringing a sense of calm to a catastrophe.

"He’s just a warm loving person,” Police Superintendent Michael Harrison said Saturday (July 18). "When arrived at your scene, he just had a very calming way about him … He was one of our great police officers. He’s the type of officer that we’re training the rest of our department to be. We will feel this loss.”

Brown, 47, died Friday night, five days after he was struck by a car while assisting a motorist at the U.S. 90-Interstate 10 east split. In a coma since the July 12 crash, Brown passed away at University Hospital around 8 p.m., Harrison said.

The incident happened around 5:30 a.m. Sunday. Authorities said the 28-year-old driver of a Ford Mustang crashed into a Toyota Scion, before striking Brown. The drivers of both cars also suffered minor injuries.

No alcohol was detected in the Mustang driver’s system after testing, officials said. The driver of the Scion tested below the legal limit.

An investigation into the incident continues, Harrison said.

Brown was an expert at reconstructing fatal crashes, and often called upon in that capacity for criminal and civil cases, the chief said. It is "ironic that he would fall victim to the very type of incidents that he once investigated,” Harrison said.

A 17-year department veteran, Brown was assigned to the 6th District.

"I’m proud of Vernell, I’m proud the work he did. He’ll never be forgotten,” Harrison said.

Standing in front of the eternal flame Saturday, Harrison repeated a posture that has become too common in recent weeks. It was the latest in a string of tragedies for the department over the past two months: the June 20 murder of Officer Daryle Holloway, who was shot to death while attempting to transport prisoner Travis Boys to the parish jail; and officers who lost children to violence and an accident.

"We’re thinking of the Brown family, but we’re also thinking of our police officers, who are once again grieving and mourning over the loss of one of our officers,” Harrison said. "It has been a very tough couple of weeks for the police department. But I have to say we are very resilient police department, very resilient police officers, just like the citizens of this city.”

Brown is survived by a fiancee and five children. Funeral arrangements are incomplete.

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