DAVIS, Calif. (AP) — Natalie Corona used to be a rising star in her police division with a comely smile and a huge coronary heart who had followed in her father’s footsteps and possess change into an officer, aesthetic a lifelong dream appropriate a couple of months ago when her dad pinned the badge on her uniform.
On Friday, her father and a taken aback community mourned the 22-yr-outmoded who used to be shot and killed on responsibility whereas responding to a multi-car rupture within the shrimp college city of Davis, California. Investigators bear in mind she used to be ambushed by a gunman on a bicycle, but they haven’t a determined the motive for his actions.
“She’s the cop that any community would desire,” said Lt. Paul Doroshov, a spokesman for the Davis Police Department. “All americans who met her cherished her.”
The shooter rode up on a bicycle and, all of sudden, opened fire as Corona used to be investigating a three-car rupture within the city that’s dwelling to the University of California in Davis, the set there has no longer been a fatal police capturing in nearly 60 years. She used to be struck within the neck.
“This regarded clearly to us love am ambush,” Police Chief Davis Police Chief Darren Pytel said Friday evening.
No lower than two witnesses refrained from atomize. A firefighter who ran away because the gunman reloaded used to be hit, however the bullet didn’t penetrate his boot. A girl carrying a backpack realized a bullet lodged in her textbook.
After unloading gunshots, the suspect went to his dwelling interior reach and chatted with his roommate without “exhibiting any signal he used to be inquisitive in regards to the incident,” Pytel said.
A backpack dropped at the crime scene led officers to call the gunman. All the contrivance thru a transient standoff open air his position, the man got here out with a bulletproof vest sooner than going serve interior, the set he pushed a couch to block the entrance door and grew to change into the gun on himself, Pytel said.
Police realized two semi-computerized handguns at the house.
The attack came about in a residential neighborhood up the boulevard from a park that hosts a weekend farmer’s market. Residents placed vegetation at a increasing memorial open air the police division Friday, the set flags flew at half of-workers.
Corona’s colleagues, family and chums mourned a though-provoking life that used to be lower short.
“She used to be the higher of us,” said Davis officer Mike Yu, after putting a “Blue Lives Matter” flag at the crime scene, a couple of mile from the police exclaim.
As the eldest of four daughters, Corona grew up dreaming of becoming a law enforcement officer love her father, said her cousin, Emily Gomez, 26.
“I don’t endure in thoughts her talking in regards to the leisure than desirous to change into an officer,” said Gomez, who said her cousin used to be an athletic star in highschool, excelling in volleyball, basketball and be aware. She grew up in a worthy-knit family within the Northern California city of Arbuckle. The family had emigrated from Mexico a couple of generations ago and had change into established people of their community.
Corona’s father, Jose Merced Corona, spent 26 years as a Colusa County Sheriff’s sergeant sooner than retiring and getting elected to the county’s Board of Supervisors final November. Her mother is a predominant-grade teacher, and two cousins are additionally in law enforcement, Gomez said.
Corona graduated from the Sacramento Police Academy final July and performed her training in December appropriate sooner than Christmas, officers said.
“She used to be very proud,” her father told Fox40-TV, choking serve tears as he spoke about how noteworthy she loved her job.
“She would reach dwelling, she’s going to seemingly be beaming,” her father said, his notify quivering. “She died doing what she wanted to enact, what she loved.”
Father and daughter smiled with satisfaction in a record from Corona’s swearing-in ceremony at the Davis Police Department in August. The record published by the Williams Pioneer Overview reveals her father pinning on her badge as Corona stands with fingers at her facet and a predominant smile.
One among the drivers within the rupture, Christian Pascual, 25, said the shooter regarded to were a bystander who fired from within the serve of him.
Pascual told The Sacramento Bee he got out of his car to change information with the different drivers inquisitive in regards to the collision when Corona arrived.
“I gave her my license, and he or she used to be appropriate about to give it to me,” Pascual said. “That’s when I heard the shots.”
He said he ducked and when he regarded up Corona used to be on the bottom and the shooter used to be “capturing at what regarded love random americans to me.”
One other behold, Shaun Kingston, said he heard at the very least 10 gunshots.
From his vantage level, across the boulevard, Kingston said he noticed the gunman shoot at a firetruck and reload expertly.
“I appropriate watched him in total shoot at the firetruck, dump a clip and put one more one in, then appropriate initiate strolling down (the) boulevard discover it irresistible wasn’t nothing,” Kingston told The Associated Press.
Kingston said he didn’t peek that an officer had been shot. He said as taken aback bystanders ran, he noticed the shooter lightly stroll away sooner than he lost ogle of him within the group.
Corona later died at UC Davis Medical Middle in Sacramento.
Pytel called Corona “a rising star within the division” who used to be “pudgy of life and energy and appropriate an absolute pleasure to be spherical.”
Lyssa Nicole, who trained Corona at the police academy, said the officer loved serving to and maintaining americans.
“She had the form of predominant coronary heart,” Nicole said. “All she wanted to enact used to be serve americans.”
In December, the Davis Police division posted an image of Corona on its Facebook page exhibiting her bringing Christmas affords to a family who lost their dwelling within the deadly fire that had destroyed the city of Paradise weeks earlier. She carried a Santa Claus-love sack that said “Contented Holidays” over her shoulder.
Corona’s bear in mind Facebook page incorporates a glamorous record of herself in a royal blue costume, maintaining a “Blue Lives Matter” flag, with a tribute that now rings eerily.
“I’d love this record to serve as my gratitude for all those law enforcement girls and men folks who possess served, who’re for the time being serving, and americans who possess died within the line of responsibility maintaining our liberties in this colossal country,” Corona wrote within the October 2016 publish.
Davis police spokesman Doroshov said the agency hasn’t lost an officer within the line of responsibility since 1959, when officer Douglas Cantrill used to be killed.
Corona is the 2d officer killed in California within the previous two and a half of weeks.
Cpl. Ronil Singh, 33, of the Newman Police Department used to be shot to demise Dec. 26 after he stopped a suspected inebriated driver.
Gustavo Arriaga Perez, additionally 33, used to be charged with the execute. Authorities said Perez Arriaga used to be within the country illegally and used to be making prepared to flee to Mexico when he used to be arrested. That killing rekindled a debate over California’s sanctuary law that limits cooperation by native officers with federal immigration authorities.
Gecker and Associated Press Writers Daisy Nguyen and Janie Har contributed to this account from San Francisco.