A California Highway Patrol motorcycle officer was struck and killed by a sedan on the 15 Freeway Saturday outside of Lake Elsinore by a suspected DUI driver, the Inland California Highway Patrol said in a statement.
The crash occurred at approximately 4:26 p.m. and the officer was airlifted to a local hospital, according to the CHP.
CHP Riverside Sgt. Steve Licon, a 27-year veteran of the CHP, was identified as the officer killed, and several different law enforcement agencies joined together to provide Licon with a procession to honor the fallen CHP officer.
Licon was conducting a traffic stop behind a Chrysler sedan, north of Nichols Road when a gray Toyota Corolla crashed into his motorcycle, with the sergeant suffering major injuries as a result, according to the CHP.
The procession to honor the fallen sergeant took about an hour as the flag-draped body was transported from Inland Valley Medical Center in Wildomar to the Riverside County Coroner's Office in Perris.
Following the procession, Licon's body was delivered to the coroner's office at approximately 10 p.m.
Michael Callahan, 36, of Winchester, was traveling on the right shoulder of the freeway and collided with the CHP motorcycle, according to the CHP. Callahan was arrested for multiple charges, including murder and suspicion of driving under the influence, the CHP said in a news conference Sunday.
Authorities said they uncovered evidence that shows gross negligence both during and before the collision and that investigators believe murder charges are appropriate for the collision.
In the statement, the CHP said, "Our thoughts and prayers are with Sergeant Licon's family as they grieve with us during this difficult time."
For anyone wishing to donate to help the Licon family, authorities said donations can be made to the following address:
Sgt. Steve Licon memorial fund PO Box 276507 Sacramento, Ca 95827 CAHP credit union