Flags to Fly at Half-Staff for Slain Salinas Officer

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Gov. Gavin Newsom on Sunday ordered flags at the state capitol to be flown at half-staff in honor of a central California police officer who was shot and killed during a traffic stop.

Salinas Police Department Officer Jorge David Alvarado died during a shootout that erupted after he pulled over a car late Friday, officials said.

Salinas Police Chief Roberto Filice said Saturday that Alvarado’s actions during the confrontation helped officers arrest the suspect. Filice did not identify the the suspect or what led to the exchange of gunfire.

“Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with Officer Jorge Alvarado’s family, friends, coworkers and the community of Salinas as they mourn his loss in a senseless act of violence," Newsom said in a statement. "Officer Alvarado died a hero and his selfless sacrifice while protecting the community he served will always be remembered.”

Alvarado, 30, was a five-year veteran of the department who previously served in the U.S. Army.

His death was the first of a police officer in the line of duty in nearly 80 years in Salinas, a city in a farming region about 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of San Francisco, Mayor Kimbley Craig said Saturday.

“Our community and our police department are devastated,” Craig said.

The Monterey County District Attorney’s Office will investigate because the case involves an officer firing his weapon.

District Attorney Jeannine Pacioni said her office will not provide more details about the shooting until the investigation has concluded.

Alvarado is survived by his fiancee and his mother, the governor's statement said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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