Mourners paid their respects Tuesday night for a CHP officer killed by a man with an assault-style rifle after a traffic stop erupted into a shootout in Riverside.
A stream of people visited a memorial for 33-year-old Officer Andre Moye outside the California Highway Patrol's Riverside station. Wreaths, flags, flowers and other items were left outside the building in memory of the officer.
Darwin Hippen lives just a few miles from the station. It was gut-wrenching sight that he's seen before.
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"Every time I drive by I see the flag at half-mast, I think, 'Who have we lost now?'"
Hippen often stopped by the office and said hello to officers.
"It's always hard when you walk away from them, because you don't know if that's probably going to be the last time you see them," he said. "And yet, they still have the grit to get in there, shut that door, turn that car on, turn that bike on, and go do their job."
Moye was killed doing the job he loved. Witnesses captured cellphone video of the long and horrific gunbattle that broke out during a traffic stop Monday afternoon in the area of Box Springs Boulevard and Eastridge Avenue in Riverside. The CHP officer was doing paperwork to impound a pickup truck when the driver reached in, grabbed a rifle and fatally wounded the officer, authorities said.
"Two or three of them dropped and that's when I was worried," said Gabriela Mendoza, a witness.
Moye's colleagues, who courageously tried to save him and two other injured officers, were in shock.
"Something you would never think of happening," said Ramon Duran, a CHP officer. "Something you don't want to believe, you can't believe."
Debbie Howard, a family member, couldn't comprehend it. "I don't understand," she said. "I just don't understand."
The driver was killed in the shootout.
Just In: Large police presence at Box Springs Blvd. off 215 Freeway. CHP advises public to avoid area after possible shots fired. An officer vehicle has a shattered windshield with bullet holes. Tune into @NBCLA for more. pic.twitter.com/6OqZbZEhXx— NBC Los Angeles (@NBCLA) August 13, 2019