The Stories of 14 Officers Lost in January

The last few weeks have been difficult all of us in the law enforcement community, as friends, families and co-workers mourn the loss of multiple public servants. 

Within the first month of 2020, we’ve lost a total of fourteen police officers who have passed away.   And not surprisingly, the media hasn’t had much to say about it.

Today, we take the time to honor these heroes for giving their lives for something greater.



Deputy Sheriff Sheldon Gordon Whiteman

Deputy Gordan from the Long County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia was killed while engaged in a high-speed pursuit on Thursday, January 23rd.

While only having been with the department for four months, he had previously served with the Chatham County Sheriff’s Office for four years.

Sadly, he leaves behind his wife, three children, and his father.


Police Officer Katherine Mary Thyne

Officer Thyne from the Newport News Police Department in Virginia tragically died on Thursday, January 23rd after being dragged by a vehicle for over a block.

She and her partner were investigating reports of drug activity, when they approached a vehicle on 1400 block of 16th Street.

The driver sped off, causing the officer to be dragged, and the driver crashed into a tree which pinned the officer between the vehicle and tree.

The young officer had only been on the force for a year and leaves behind her 2-year-old daughter, fiancée, mother, three brothers, and grandparents.

 

Major Angelanette Moore

Major Moore of the Virginia Peninsula Regional Jail in Virginia passed away on Thursday, January 23rd.

After serving in the jail for 20 years, she collapsed while on duty from a heart attack. Despite officers and medical staff immediately administering CPR, she could not be resuscitated.

She is survived by her husband and son.


Officer Tiffany-Victoria Bilon Enriquez & Officer Kaulike Kalama

Officer Enriquez and Officer Kalama of the Honolulu Police Department in Hawaii died on Sunday, January 19th after responding to a stabbing call at a home.

Officer Enriquez was one of the first officers who arrived at the scene to help the stabbing victim. When she approached the house where the suspect was located, she was gunned down.

She was an Air Force Reserves Veteran and served the department for seven years.

Officer Kalama later responded to the residence after Officer Enriquez was shot, and he was also shot by the suspect inside the home.

Officer Kalama had served the department for nine years and leaves behind his wife and son. Officer Enriquez is survived by three daughters and one grandson.

 
Deputy Sheriff Jarid Taylor

Deputy Taylor of the Bryan County Sheriff’s Office in Oklahoma died in a vehicular crash on Tuesday, January 14th while responding to an emergency call.

He had been with the Sheriff’s office for just under two years and is survived by his two children and fiancée.


Detective Amber Joy Leist

Detective Leist of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in California passed away on Sunday, January 12th after she was struck by an oncoming vehicle after helping an elderly woman who fell in the roadway.

While off-duty, she managed to help the woman safely across the intersection, but was struck while returning to her car.

She served with the department for twelve years and is survived by her two sons.


Police Officer Nicholas Reyna

Officer Reyna of the Lubbock Police Department in Texas was killed by another vehicle while tending to a single-car rollover on Saturday, January 11th.

Lieutenant Eric Hill of the Lubbock Fire Department was killed as a result as well. Officer Reyna had only been on the force for a year before he passed.


Police Officer Paul Dunn

Officer Dunn of the Lakeland Police Department in Florida had died as a result of crashing his motorcycle on Thursday, January 9th.

He was heading back to the police station on his department motorcycle when he struck a raised median of the roadway, causing him to be thrown from the bike.

The Marine Corps veteran had served with Lakeland Police Department for six years and had previously served with the Polk County Sheriff’s Office for 12 years. He leaves behind his wife, three children, and two stepdaughters.


Public Safety Officer Jackson Ryan Winkeler

Officer Winkeler of the Florence Regional Airport Department of Public Safety in South Carolina was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop Sunday, January 5th.

Officer Winkeler also served as a volunteer firefighter with the Latta Fire Department prior to his passing.

He is survived by both his parents and his sisters.


Investigator Ryan D. Fortini

Officer Fortini of the New York State Police passed away from cancer on Wednesday, January 1st.

He had served the department for 16 years before retiring in 2015, and his cancer had stemmed from his assignment to the search and recovery efforts at the World Trade Center site following the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Officer Fortini is survived by his fiancee, parents, brother, and sister.


Officer Munir “Mo” Edais

Officer Munir “Mo” Edais of the Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Department died unexpectedly on January 21st.

The circumstances of the officer’s death were never revealed, but he’d served with the department for 10 years and leaves behind his 2 children and one child on the way.


Investigator John Cole Haynie

Investigator John Cole Haynie of the Rockdale County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia died on Saturday, January 25th after a month-long battle with the flu.

He had served the sheriff’s office for 8 years prior to his passing. He is survived by his wife.

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Officer Cesar Ramirez

Officer Ramirez of the Norwalk Police Department in Connecticut passed away on January 28th after battling brain cancer.

He had served the department for 32 years prior to passing and was celebrated by his community and Norwalk Mayor Harry Rilling named December 13th as “Cesar Ramirez Day” in his honor.
 
​By Gregory Hoyt | Law Enforcement Today  lawenforcementtoday.com​​