In the early morning hours of October 22, 2006, Los Angeles Police Department Northeast Area Officer Landon Dorris and his partner, Officer Marc Fujiwara, were investigating a minor traffic collision at Riverside Drive and Hyperion Avenue. Officer Dorris was outside his cruiser when a car heading west on Riverside Drive struck him. The force of the impact caused Dorris to hit another car that was waiting to turn left onto the Golden State Freeway onramp.
Officer Dorris was transported to University of Southern California Medical Center in critical condition with major head trauma. Despite the best efforts of the hospital emergency staff, Dorris did not survive his injuries.
The driver of the vehicle that struck Dorris stopped and was neither arrested nor cited, according to Sgt. Lee Sands, adding alcohol was not a factor in the tragedy.
“Right now it’s being deemed as an unfortunate accident,” Sands said.
Latter that Sunday morning, LAPD Chief William Bratton and Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa held a news conference where they expressed their grief over the officer’s death. “The men and women of the LAPD are deeply saddened by the loss of a fellow officer,” Bratton said. “Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Officer Dorris during this difficult time.” Villaraigosa declared Monday, October 23rd a day of mourning, with flags at all city buildings flown at half-staff.
At the time of his death, Officer Dorris was 31-years-old and had been with the LAPD for 3 years and 4 months. Prior to his service with the LAPD, Dorris served six years with the California Highway Patrol as a motorcycle officer. He is survived by his mother Elaine; fiancee Marisabel; two sons, ages 1 and 3; and sisters Carrie and Amy.
Over 2000 fellow officers, city and state dignitaries, friends, and family of Officer Dorris gathered at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in downtown Los Angeles on the morning of Friday, October 27th, to pay their respects.
Mayor Villaraigosa spoke in honor of Officer Dorris. “Today my heavy heart, and the heavy hearts of every Angeleno, is with the family of Officer Landon Dorris.
Our hearts and our prayers are with his mother, with his fiancé, and with his two young boys, who are not yet old enough to fully understand that their father was a true hero.
Our hearts are also with each and every member of the Los Angeles Police Department, and particularly to the members of the Northeast Area Station, as we share in their sorrow for the loss of one of their own.
Today should remind all of us of the great sacrifices made and risks taken by the brave men and women of the LAPD in order to keep us safe.
It reminds us that our officers have dedicated their lives to the most noble of professions.
And it reminds us what a tremendous debt of gratitude we owe each and every member of the Los Angeles Police Department, who put their lives on the line every day.”
Following the memorial services, Officer Landon Dorris was laid to rest at Pacific View Memorial Park in Corona del Mar.
A trust fund has been established to support Dorris’ two young sons. Donations should be sent to the Blue Ribbon Trust Account, Attention Officer Dorris Fund c/o Steve Getsoff, 17404 Ventura Blvd., second floor, Encino, CA 91316.