As you remember these fallen officers, take comfort in recalling that they dedicated their lives to the same principles of honor, duty and courage that brought you to the badge. Such a life is truly rich. Take strength in knowing that when an officer falls, our resolve to serve those in need is not diminished. Our dedication to protecting those in danger is not weakened. Our commitment to remembering those with whom we shared the badge does not fade.
Godspeed, brothers and sisters. You fought the good fight. Now rest in peace…
Officer Down: Officer Matthew Pavelka - [Burbank Police Department, California]
Cop Killed in Calif. Traffic-Stop Shootout
Sunday, November 16, 2003
BURBANK, Calif. ? A gunfight erupted in downtown Burbank (search) during what began as a routine traffic stop, killing a gunman and a police officer and wounding a second officer.
A second gunman was being sought Sunday in this Los Angeles (search) suburb.
The shootout happened about 6:30 p.m. Saturday when the officers pulled over a sports utility vehicle, said police Sgt. William Berry. He did not say what the nature of the stop was.
The men in the SUV "apparently ... came out of the vehicle firing," Berry said. "The officers were hit several times but still managed to kill one of the suspects."
Officer Matthew Pavelka, 26, who was called in for backup, died in surgery Saturday night, police spokeswoman Lyn DeBoeven said. Officer Gregory Campbell, 41, was hospitalized Sunday in critical condition.
Berry said both officers were wearing bulletproof vests.
It wasn't immediately clear what prompted the shooting. "There are only four known witnesses to the shooting," the two officers and the gunmen, Berry said.
As police searched the area, the California Highway Patrol (search) closed a five-mile stretch of Interstate 5 for several hours.
The TASER Foundation’s mission is to honor the service and sacrifice of local and federal law enforcement officers lost in the line of duty by providing financial and edcuational support to their families.