San Bernardino, CA – San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputy Lawrence Falce, 70, was murdered on Sunday, Dec. 31, 2017. He was off-duty at the time.
The incident occurred about 11 a.m., when Deputy Falce was driving his personal vehicle and was involved in a minor traffic crash at Kendall Drive and University Avenue.
After the crash, both drivers stopped and made contact. The other driver, Alonzo Leron Smith, attacked Deputy Falce hitting him once, which knocked him unconscious, according to the San Bernardino Police Department (SBPD).
The suspect tried to flee in his vehicle, and a good Samaritan rammed the car with his truck in an attempt to stop its escape.
Smith was able to escape, but was captured hours later at his girlfriend’s home.
Deputy Falce was transported to Loma Linda Medical Center, where he succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday night, Jan. 2, according to KTLA. He was taken off life support shortly after 8 p.m. Tuesday.
The San Bernardino County Safety Employees Benefit Association (SEBA), of which Deputy Falce was a member, described the assault as brutal.
Deputy Falce began his career in correction at the Glen Helen Rehabilitation Center and the Central Detention Center, and worked patrol for Central Station for the last 32 years.
Before joining the department, he served his country in the Army and prided himself as being a lifelong public servant, according to VVNG.
“Larry was a hard-working, dedicated professional, who loved his job as a deputy sheriff,” said SEBA President and SBCSD Sergeant Grant Ward. “I worked with him and I can tell you his commitment to this profession was second to none. He was generous to all those he cared about and gave willingly from the bottom of his heart.”
Deputy Falce was the oldest sworn member of the SBCSD, and had served for 36 years.
The SBPD is conducting the criminal investigation.
Deputy Falce is survived by his sister, Marjorie, his girlfriend of many years, Deborah, and other family members.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputy Lawrence ‘Larry’ Falce, both blood and blue. Godspeed, sir, we will take the watch from here. Thank you for your service.