Two Nevada State Police Troopers died after they were run over in a hit-and-run Thursday while checking on a motorist who appeared to be sleeping in the driver's seat on a Las Vegas freeway, officials said.
The two troopers stopped at about 3:23 a.m. to check on someone who had pulled over to the side of the road on Interstate 15, according to a news release by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. Officials said a white Chevrolet station wagon collided with the troopers moments later.
One trooper died of his injuries at the scene. The other trooper was transported to the UMC Trauma Center, where he later died, officials said.
Thursday evening, Nevada officials released the names of the troopers. Sergeant Michael Abbate joined the department in December 2013 and was promoted this month. Trooper Alberto Felix joined the department in 2019 and had previously served in the U.S. Air Force.
“Both dedicated their careers to serving the State of Nevada with exceptional commitment and pride,” state police said in a statement.
Police extended condolences to friends and family of the troopers. Officials said more information will become available as they investigate.
A 'disturbing trend': More police are dying from gun violence today than a decade ago
Suspect identified; community 'profoundly saddened'
Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo released a statement Thursday saying he was “profoundly saddened” about the troopers’ deaths.
“This is a devastating loss for Nevada law enforcement, the city of Las Vegas, and our entire state,” he said. “As we mourn these troopers, we will never forget their bravery, courage and sacrifice.”
Police said the suspect, identified as Jemarcus Williams, 46, fled the scene in an unknown direction. Responding officials performed a grid search for the white vehicle and located it unoccupied by an apartment complex at about 8 a.m.
Williams was arrested and booked into the Clark County Detention Center. He was charged with two counts of reckless driving resulting in death, two counts of driving under the influence resulting in death, and two counts of not staying at the scene of an accident.
Las Vegas police said the investigation is being led by the department’s homicide section.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact LVMPD Homicide Section by phone at 702-828-3521 or anonymously at 702-385-5555, or on the internet at www.crimestoppersofnv.com.
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Officials identify Nevada State Troopers killed in freeway hit-and-run