By PoliceOne Staff
NOGALES, Ariz. — Hundreds gathered to remember an Arizona officer who was killed in the line of duty by a carjacking suspect.
The Arizona Republic reported that law enforcement officials, family, friends and community members gathered Sunday at the site where Nogales Officer Jesus Cordova was killed. Attendees donned in blue came to support the officer who was killed after responding to a reported carjacking.
“If he could do it all over again, I know that he would, because that’s just who he was,” Cordova’s wife, Alyssa, said. “He loved to serve. He loved to serve his people. He loved to serve his family. He loved to serve his community.”
On Friday, Cordova responded to reports of an armed carjacker and spotted the suspect driving away from the scene, according to the Associated Press. Police said Cordova initiated the traffic stop before the suspect opened fire and wounded the officer.
Cordova was airlifted to a hospital, where he later succumbed to his injuries.
“His car was parked here somewhere, where you guys are standing,” Chief Roy Bermudez said. “The individual came running to him. If Officer Cordova hadn’t been here, and hadn’t put his life on the line for our community, imagine if this individual would have gone into Villa’s [Market] at 2:30 in the afternoon.”
Police said the suspected shooter, 28-year-old David Ernesto Murillo, carjacked two more vehicles after the shooting before fleeing on foot. Murillo was later apprehended at a trailer park.
Family members described Cordova as a playful and good-natured man who had a love for law enforcement.
“It’s very painful to have lost him, because he was a role model for everyone,” Hector Raul Ojeda Salazar, Cordova’s uncle, said. “To all my nieces and nephews, he is the one I would always use as an example.”
Cordova leaves behind a wife and three children, and was expecting another baby soon.
El @NogalesPoliceAz le hace una vigilia al Oficial Jesús Cordova quien murió el viernes en un enfrentamiento con un civil armado . No había muerto un oficial de Nogales durante su complemento al deber desde 1888.@TelemundoAZ pic.twitter.com/M03V1GziYW
— Estefania Soto (@EstefaniaTAZ) April 30, 2018
At 6pm a vigil for Officer Jesus Cordova will be held at the corner of Grand and Mesa Verde, the same location he was shot and killed. We’ll bring it to you on @kgun9 tonight at 7. pic.twitter.com/iCUAPfNK5g
— Ivan Rodriguez (@IvanRodriguezTV) April 30, 2018
Dozens of #Nogales community members have gathered for a vigil honoring slain @NogalesPoliceAz Officer Jesus “Chuy” Cordova. There are many law enforcement officers present including Border Patrol agents and customs officers. pic.twitter.com/QATbCPbN0a
— Rafael Carranza (@RafaelCarranza) April 30, 2018