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…
December 31, 2003
Minn. Sheriff's Deputy Killed in Four-Car DUI Crash
Officer Down: Jon F. Niemann - [Prior Lake, Minnesota]
The Associated Press
PLYMOUTH, Minn. - A Scott County sheriff's deputy who crusaded against drunken driving was killed Tuesday night in a four-car crash that police believe was caused by a drunken driver.
Jon F. Niemann, 37, of Prior Lake, had just dropped off his 11-year-old son and was headed home on Interstate 494 when a car jumped the median and struck his pickup just after 10 p.m. Niemann, who was off duty, was killed instantly.
The suspect, a 21-year-old Albertville man, was believed to be intoxicated, authorities said.
Witnesses said the suspect's car was in the northbound lane when it swerved, hit the median and went airborne. It landed on Niemann's pickup in the southbound lane and then crashed into two other vehicles.
The suspect was being held for observation at North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale. The driver of the third vehicle was treated and released, and a fourth driver was not hurt.
Niemann, who is survived by his wife and two sons, was an advocate for tougher penalties for drunken drivers, said his mother, Allie Niemann.
"He really had a passion to make the world a better place," she said.
Jon Niemann, who joined the Marines at age 18, served as a sheriff's deputy in Los Angeles before moving back to Minnesota. He also volunteered as a firefighter in Scott County.
"Jon always put someone else before himself," his wife, Lorrie Niemann, said.
His father, Ray Niemann, cautioned others to think twice before getting behind the wheel after having a few drinks. "You can talk and talk and talk until you're blue in the face - someway, somehow the message has got to get out to folks. ... It's one thing to drink and party, but recognize that you're not capable of driving after you do that."
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