By Cecilia Chan and Kevin Reagan
SanTan Solar Information Workers Writers
Arizona this weekend is mourning the lack of a veteran Chandler police officer who was killed within the line of obligation in the course of the lethal climax of a chase that started in Eloy and ended at a Gilbert auto multiplex.
Officer Christopher Farrar, an 18-year veteran Chandler policeman who had been assigned to the K9 division, was struck and killed by an unidentified man who had stolen a pickup truck in Pinal County the night of April 29.
Officer Farrar is the primary East Valley officer killed in motion this 12 months and apparently the primary police officer in Arizona this 12 months to die within the line of obligation.
An unidentified Gilbert police officer was in vital situation on the time of the Arizonan’s deadline. He too was struck by the suspect, who’s in custody.
“Day by day he got here to work, he made a distinction,” an emotional Chandler Police Chief Sean Duggan stated of Officer Farrar at a pre-dawn press convention Friday. “In the midst of 18 years, he touched many lives.
“So I simply ask that you just hold Chris’ household in your prayers and simply take a second and keep in mind and be conscious of the courageous women and men who’re on the market every day serving to to maintain our group protected.”
Tributes and expressions of sympathy for Officer Farrar flooded social media.
“It’s simply tragic,” stated Chandler Councilman Matt Orlando. “These guys and gals put their life on the road daily and we simply received to maintain supporting them and making a greater police drive.”
Chandler Vice Mayor Mark Stewart provided his sympathies to the officer’s household and stated “Christopher served our nice metropolis with honor and delight for 18 years and he will probably be missed tremendously.”
Police departments throughout Arizona lowered their flags half mast and paid tribute to him, as did Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Jack Sellers, Chandler Chamber President Terri Kimble and quite a few different officers.
Gilbert Mayor Brigette Peterson issued an announcement saying, “We want to specific our deepest condolences to the household, buddies and colleagues of Chandler Police Officer Christopher Farrar who tragically misplaced his life within the line of obligation.”
Gilbert Police didn’t launch the identify of its injured officer, who suffered a extreme head damage.
The pursuit occurred round 10:11 p.m. Thursday when a Pinal County Sheriff’s Deputy tried a visitors cease on State Route 87 north of Eloy, based on a Gilbert police information launch.
“The suspect automobile fled from the deputy and fired gun pictures on the deputy as he was in pursuit,” the discharge acknowledged.
“The pursuit continued into Chandler the place the suspect drove into the Chandler Airport runway by breaking via town’s safety gates. The suspect then fled onto the 202 San Tan Freeway driving the unsuitable approach.”
Police stated the suspect then exited the freeway the place he ultimately crashed close to the Val Vista Drive eastbound on-ramp and fled on foot into the San Tan Ford dealership lot.
Pinal County deputies, Division of Public Security troopers and Chandler and Gilbert Police surrounded the constructing.
The suspect then stole a automobile from the dealership and tried to flee the lot.
In doing so, the suspect hit Officer Farrar, the Gilbert officer and a automotive dealership janitorial worker, who walked away with minor accidents. Two DPS troopers additionally have been injured, based on the Arizona Troopers Affiliation.
“The troopers have non-life-threatening accidents,” DPS spokesman Bart Graves stated. “I can not go into every other element.”
Three Pinal County Sheriff’s deputies and 4 DPS troopers shot on the suspect, injuring him.
The suspect was taken into custody the place he was transported to the hospital for non-life-threatening accidents, based on the discharge. The suspect’s identify was not launched Friday morning by deadline.
Officer Farrar was described as a devoted public servant and his work was acknowledged in 2010 after his company honored him with its “Group Service Award.”
In 2006, he was introduced with a medal after he and one other officer rescued a lady who was considering suicide.
“Officer Farrar served the Chandler group for almost 20 years and was taken far too quickly,” stated U.S. Rep. Greg Stanton, whose district consists of elements of Chandler.
The general public additionally shared their grief over the loss.
“My coronary heart aches for the household of this officer,” wrote a person on a Gilbert group Fb web page. “These males and lady are true heroes. They get up daily and out their life on the road to guard and serve. Might he RIP.”
It has been seven years since a member of the Chandler Police drive was killed on the job, based on the Officer Down Memorial Web page, a nonprofit group.
Along with his demise, Chandler Police now have misplaced 5 officers who died whereas performing their job.
In 2016, Officer David Smith Payne was killed after a drunken driver rear-ended his police motorbike, which was stopped at a purple mild on the intersection of Chandler Boulevard and Pennington Drive.
And, Officer Carlos Luciano Ledesma was killed in 2010 whereas conducting an undercover narcotics operation at a house in Phoenix, based on the officer memorial website.
Earlier than him, there was Officer Robert Nielsen, who was killed in an vehicle accident whereas responding to a different accident name in 2002. His demise was one in every of greater than 100 officers’ deaths that occurred due to design defaults in Ford Crown Victorias, a then-popular patrol automotive.
Chandler Officer James Snedigar was fatally shot in 1999 whereas performing a SWAT raid on armed theft suspects close to Priest Drive and Ray Street.
Chandler Police additionally recorded a demise of one in every of their very own in January circuitously linked to his line of labor. Officer Tyler Britt, a 19-year member of the drive, died from issues of COVID-19.
The final Gilbert officer to die on obligation was Lt. Eric Shuhandler, who was fatally shot in 2010 when he stopped a automobile occupied by two males close to the intersection of Val Vista and Baseline roads in Gilbert.
A wild chase ensued earlier than police captured the killers after a gunfight on US60 close to Superior. Each killers are serving life sentences.
In 2006, Gilbert Officer Rob Targosz died after his motorbike was struck by a drunken driver on the intersection of Worth Street and Apache Boulevard in Tempe throughout a DUI checkpoint train.
In Mesa, two officers have died within the line of obligation, the final in 1994 and Tempe Police has seen 5 officers die with the final demise in 2006.
So far, based on the memorial web page, Arizona has misplaced 264 legislation enforcement officers within the line of obligation for the reason that Eighties.
Within the state, Phoenix Police Division led with probably the most fallen officers at 41, adopted by Arizona Division of Public Security with 30.
For 2021 up to now, 118 legislation enforcement officers have died nationwide, based on the memorial web page.
And since 1776, there have been 24,870 identified line of obligation deaths in America, the memorial web page acknowledged.