Newsom Orders State Flags to Half-Staff After LASD Recruit’s Death

Newsom Orders State Flags to Half-Staff After LASD Recruit’s Death

The California state flag on Aug. 25, 2021. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

7/31/2023

Updated: 12/30/2023

California Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered that state flags will fly at half-staff at the Capitol and other government buildings in honor of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department recruit Alejandro Martinez, who died on July 28, eight months after being critically injured by an SUV during training.
“Jennifer and I are heartbroken by the tragic passing of Alejandro Martinez, our deepest condolences are with his family, friends, and academy classmates at this difficult time,” Newsom said in a July 30 statement. “Recruit Martinez was dedicated to serving his community, and his commitment to California will never be forgotten.”
Mr. Martinez, 27, and other law enforcement recruits were struck by a motor vehicle on Nov. 16, 2022, during training at a law enforcement academy in Whittier, a city in Los Angeles County. Seventy-five recruits were running in formation on a street when the vehicle veered into them, leaving 25 injured.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department recruit Alejandro Martinez died July 28, 2023, eight months after being critically injured by a car during training on Nov. 16, 2022. (Courtesy of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department)

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department recruit Alejandro Martinez died July 28, 2023, eight months after being critically injured by a car during training on Nov. 16, 2022. (Courtesy of Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department)

The driver, Nicholas Joseph Gutierrez, 22, of Diamond Bar, was arrested for investigation of attempted murder of a peace officer, but authorities later released him pending further investigation. Gutierrez told reporters last year that he had fallen asleep at the wheel.
The accident left Mr. Martinez in grave condition; he had been hospitalized at UCLA Medical Center in Westwood since the crash.
“Surrounded by his family, friends, Sheriff Luna, and other department members in support of his family, Alejandro has now gone to his eternal resting place,” the sheriff’s department said on July 28 in a statement. ”Tragically, he was not able to fulfill his calling of helping others.”
Other government and law enforcement officials offered condolences over the weekend.
“The men & women of [LAPD] join our LASD brothers & sisters in mourning the loss of Recruit Deputy Alejandro Martinez,” Los Angeles Police Department Chief Michel Moore posted on July 30 on social media.
Janice Hahn, chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, also paid tribute.
“Last year, when we started a new effort to recruit more LASD deputies, Alejandro Martinez answered our call,” Ms. Hahn wrote on X, formerly known as Twitter, on July 29. “His passing, months after that terrible crash, is nothing short of a tragedy. My prayers are with his family, his friends, and fellow recruits.”
Mr. Martinez is survived by his parents, Arturo and Olga Martinez, and his sister, Dianna Martinez.
Copy
facebooktwitterlinkedintelegram
Jill McLaughlin

Jill McLaughlin

Author

Jill McLaughlin is an award-winning journalist covering politics, environment, and statewide issues. She has been a reporter and editor for newspapers in Oregon, Nevada, and New Mexico. Jill was born in Yosemite National Park and enjoys the majestic outdoors, traveling, golfing, and hiking.

Author's Selected Articles
California Insider
Sign up here for our email newsletter!
©2024 California Insider All Rights Reserved. California Insider is a part of Epoch Media Group.