Riverside County sheriff’s deputy shot, killed in Jurupa Valley; suspect also dead after chase

Riverside County sheriff’s deputy shot, killed in Jurupa Valley; suspect also dead after chase

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (KABC) — A Riverside County sheriff’s deputy was shot and killed by a career criminal while attempting a traffic stop in Jurupa Valley Thursday, officials said.

The shooting suspect was also dead after a chase through Riverside County ended in gunfire on the 15 Freeway.

The deputy has been identified as Isaiah Cordero, 32, who had been with the department since 2014 but completed his motorcycle enforcement training just a few months ago.

“He was a joker around the station,” Sheriff Chad Bianco said. And all our MPs considered him their little brother”.

Deputy Isaiah Cordero of the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department was shot and killed in the line of duty on December 29, 2022.

The Riverside Sheriffs Association released a statement that read in part:

“We are devastated by the loss of Deputy Isaiah Cordero, a deputy who was a ray of sunshine for the Riverside Sheriff’s Department, a person who was dedicated to protecting others. Once again, we are faced with a tragic reminder of selflessness and unflinching courage is required of peace officers and their families.”

“Deputy Cordero put on his uniform every day to make a difference in his community and keep families safe. Deputy Cordero’s death leaves a huge hole in the hearts of so many who had the opportunity to know him personally. Today, Deputy Cordero made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty – a debt that can never be repaid. We must honor his memory and life of public service with our words and actions. Our hearts go out to his family, friends and fellow MPs in this difficult time.”

After the shooting in the Rubidoux section of Jurupa Valley, the deputy was transported to Riverside Community Hospital, a Riverside Fire Department spokesman said.

Dozens of law enforcement vehicles, many of them motorcycles, gathered outside the hospital to escort the body of the slain deputy in a procession to the coroner’s office in Perris.

Authorities were able to identify a suspect and chased the individual in a pickup truck over several highways in Riverside County. The video showed dozens of law enforcement vehicles following the pickup closely as the truck sped away at about 45-50 mph.

The suspect fled onto the 60 and 15 freeways and the chase ended near Norco under the 5th Street overpass on the southbound 15 freeway.

Witnesses say at one point they saw the suspect brandishing a gun at other vehicles during the chase.

In the end, the truck was on the shoulder of the freeway, pinned to the embankment by a law enforcement bearcat. The suspect was apparently killed after at least two shots were fired through the truck’s windshield.

How the shooting took place

Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco said the incident unfolded around 2 p.m. when Deputy Cordero — who had just completed motorcycle training in September — attempted to pull over a suspect for a traffic violation on Rubidoux in the 3900 block of Goldenwest Avenue.

As Cordero approached the vehicle, the suspect immediately opened fire, striking the deputy and driving away.

A witness in the area called 911 and tried to help the injured deputy until help arrived. Although he was rushed to a nearby trauma center, it was clear the injuries were fatal and he was soon pronounced dead, Bianco said.

Cordero had joined the department in 2014, initially working as a correctional deputy. He began his basic training at the academy in early 2018 and was promoted to sworn MP. He finished driving school in September of this year and was assigned to enforcement duty, which was his goal from the day he was hired, Bianco said.

What do we know about the suspect?

The suspect was identified as William Shae McKay, 44, whose last known address was in San Bernardino County.

Bianco described McKay as having an extensive criminal history dating back more than 20 years, including kidnapping, robbery, multiple assaults with a deadly weapon and involvement in an incident that resulted in the stabbing of a CHP K- 9.

“This terrible tragedy should have been prevented by the legal system,” Bianco said.

For his most recent offense, in 2021, Bianco said McKay should have been locked up for more than 25 years. Instead, he said, the judge lowered his bail, allowing him to walk the streets. He was re-arrested after failing to appear at his trial.

He declined to identify the judge, but said: “We wouldn’t be here today if the judge had done her job.”

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