An Ohio police officer was killed on Thursday after being struck by a fleeing vehicle that he was attempting to stop.
Officer Dominic Francis of the Bluffton Police Department was trying to place spike strips to stop the driver when he was hit by the vehicle around 3 a.m.
According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, the suspects were attempting to evade law enforcement officers during a high-speed chase, reaching at least 120 miles per hour.
After striking the officers, the three suspects fled the area on foot. Law enforcement ignited a manhunt for the individuals that lasted until midday. However, all three suspects were captured.
“A hero has died and a community is shaken. The bravery of the men and women that wear the badge is astounding. Officer Francis’ valor will live on and never be forgotten. My deepest condolences are with Officer Francis’ loved ones and the residents of Bluffton,” said Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost.
Francis has served with the police department for nine years and played a key role in the community, also working as a teacher, bus driver, and coach.
After the tragedy, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine ordered all flags in the area to be flown at half-staff.
“Fran and I are sad to learn of the death of Bluffton Police Officer Dominic Francis, who tragically died today after being hit by a fleeing driver. We are grateful to him for his selfless service to Ohio, and our hearts go out to his family and his colleagues at the Bluffton PD,” DeWine said.
In honor of Officer Francis' life and legacy, I have ordered that flags be flown at half-staff on all public buildings and grounds in Allen and Hancock counties, as well as in Columbus at the Statehouse, Riffe Center, and Rhodes Tower. pic.twitter.com/YkJkCX2gz6
— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) March 31, 2022
“In honor of Officer Francis’ life and legacy, I have ordered that flags be flown at half-staff on all public buildings and grounds in Allen and Hancock counties, as well as in Columbus at the Statehouse, Riffe Center, and Rhodes Tower.”
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