(CNS) – Funeral services for Riverside County Sheriff’s Deputy Isaiah Cordero, who was fatally shot by a convicted felon during a traffic stop, are set for Friday morning at Harvest Christian Fellowship Church in Riverside.
The services are set to begin at 11 a.m. at the church, located at 6115 Arlington Ave., and the interment will be private.
The 32-year-old Cordero was killed shortly before 2 p.m. Thursday in the 3900 block of Golden West Avenue, near Rathke Drive, less than a block from Rustic Lane Elementary School, which was not in session. The suspect died two hours later in a freeway gunfight with deputies.
“My heart goes out to the family, friends, and colleagues of Deputy Isaiah Cordero,” Attorney General Rob Bonta said Friday. “Deputy Cordero will forever be remembered for his extraordinary service protecting the people of California. I extend my sincere condolences to Deputy Cordero’s loved ones and the Riverside community.”
The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department released a statement saying, “Our deepest condolences go out to the family of Deputy Cordero and our partners at the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department.”
The Los Angeles Police Department also saluted “our brothers and sisters at the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department” amid their suffering, and the Riverside Police Department praised Cordero as “a hero … killed in the line of duty.”
“We stand beside our brothers and sisters from the sheriff’s department as they mourn their tragic loss. May you rest in peace, good sir.”
The Riverside Sheriffs’ Association, which represents the nearly 4,000 line deputies countywide, remembered Cordero as “a ray of sunshine … a person who was dedicated to protecting others.”
On Thursday, Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco said the eight-year law enforcement veteran “embodied our motto, `Service Above Self.”‘
“All of our deputies considered him to be a little brother,” Bianco said during a news briefing outside sheriff’s headquarters in downtown Riverside.
Bianco said Cordero, a motorcycle patrolman, stopped 44-year-old William Shea McKay of San Bernardino, a three-strike felon, for reasons still under investigation but possibly related to irregularities with the black pickup he was driving.
According to the sheriff, McKay’s criminal history included convictions for kidnapping, assault on a California Highway Patrol canine and armed robbery.
“This tragedy should have been (prevented) by the criminal justice system,” Bianco said. “This suspect was on his third strike in 2021. But instead of receiving a sentence of 25 years to life in state prison, a judge lowered his bail. He failed to appear for sentencing … and the same judge released him again. We would not be here today if this judge had done her job.”
San Bernardino County Superior Court documents show that the judge was Cara D. Hutson, out of the Rancho Cucamonga branch. She was re-elected to the bench in June and has been a judicial officer since 2007.
“(McKay) should have been immediately sentenced. The judge allowed him out, and here we are today,” Bianco said.
The Riverside County Deputy Sheriff Relief Foundation has started a “Help A Hero” page, on which people can make donations to the Cordero family. Donations can be made at https://helpahero.com/campaign/deputy-isaiah-cordero. As early Saturday morning, it had raised $45,602 toward a goal of $100,000.
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