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March 15, 2010
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Ohio officer collapsed, died while chasing suspect

Death was related to heart troubles

PoliceOne Staff

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio — The Cleveland Heights police officer who collapsed and died while chasing a suspect had cardiac problems, according to the Plain Dealer.

Patrolman Thomas Patton was chasing a suspect through woods and back yards when he collapsed.

In an interview with the Plain Dealer, Patton's uncle (also a retired police officer) said, ""This kid wanted to be a policeman since he was 5 years old. That's all he talked about. He used to walk around with our old hats and old police shirts dragging down to the floor."

The Patton family produced three generations of police officers, starting with Thomas Patton's grandfather, John T. Patton, who joined the Cleveland Police Department in 1946. John Patton died in November at age 89.

The suspect Patton was chasing was later taken into custody.

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