Home > News > 

Fla. Deputy Killed in Crash, Responding As Back-Up

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…

April 26, 2004

Print Register RSS What's This

Fla. Deputy Killed in Crash, Responding As Back-Up

Officer Down: Brian Andrew Haas - [LaBelle, Florida]

A Hendry County, Fla. Sheriff's deputy died early Saturday after his patrol car rear-ended a truck while on his way to a call.

Deputy Brian Andrew Haas, 21, was responding as a back-up officer to a prowler call in Montura, a remote community between LaBelle and Clewiston, sheriff's Sgt. Susan Harrelle said.

The crash occurred around 3:20 a.m. on State Route 25, about 5 miles north of Clewiston. Haas was traveling northbound "at high speed" in the outside lane when he overtook a 2000 Kenworth truck driven by Donnie Haithcock, 48, of South Bay, Florida Highway Patrol officials said.

The right front of Haas' cruiser hit the left rear of the truck, causing the car to overturn several times and ejecting Haas. He was not wearing a seat belt. Haithcock was treated for minor injuries at Hendry Regional Hospital, according to FHP.

Haas had been a deputy for fewer than five months. He began his career with the sheriff's office as a corrections officer in August 2002.

But his life's passion turned to becoming a deputy, said former Lt. James Boone, who took Haas on ride-alongs when he was thinking about becoming a deputy.

"After he rode, he just fell totally in love with it," said Boone, now a candidate for Hendry County sheriff. "He was going to be helping people."

Haas graduated from the academy and transferred to road patrol on Dec. 1, 2003.

"He just loved the job," Boone said. "He loved knowing he was doing something."

He is the second Southwest Florida officer killed in an on-duty accident in the past year.

In October, Fort Myers Police officer Daniel Starks died after his car collided with another patrol car during a police chase.

Sheriff's officials were in shock this weekend.

"We are dealing and coping with the loss of a fellow officer," Harrelle said.

Boone said Hendry County lost an officer who loved helping people.

"He was a real good kid and he had the heart to be a real good officer," he said.

A memorial service is planned for 11 a.m. Friday at the LaBelle Civic Center.

Has an officer fallen in your department or local area? Submit news articles and information on the incident to the PoliceOne site.

The comments below are member-generated and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of PoliceOne or its staff.

Denotes officer was a registered member of the PoliceOne Community

PoliceOne Offers

Back to Officer Down Section


Support the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and help honor America’s law enforcement officers – especially our fallen heroes



Concerns of Police Survivors

COPS (Concerns of Police Survivors) provides resources to assist in the rebuilding of the lives of survivors of law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty.

TASER Foundation

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.

More Officer Downs

All Officer Downs Submit an Officer Down

Tribute Videos

We ride for those who died Tribute for fallen officers Never alone, never forgotten Police Week Tribute