• Two police officers in separate vehicles responded to a robbery and arrived at a nearby intersection at the same time.
• One of the officers reportedly ran through the red light and broadsided the other officer’s vehicle.
• One of the officers died. The other was seriously injured and underwent emergency surgery.
Alhambra patrol officer Ryan Stringer, a Whittier resident, had recently returned to work after recovering from major injuries he suffered in an off-duty motorcycle accident a year ago. In that accident, his motorcycle collided with a big-rig.
Alhambra Police Department spokesperson Edith Lopez said Stringer and another officer — later identified as 27-year-old Juan Carlos Mejia of Sun Valley — both were responding to a robbery in a downtown parking lot in the 100 block of North First Street.
They both approached the intersection of N. Garfield Avenue and East Main Street at the same time. Witnesses said Mejia’s patrol car ran through a red light and crashed into Stringer’s cruiser, broadsiding the vehicle, according to a Police One report.
Alhambra Police Chief Mark Yokoyama would not confirm the circumstances of the collision.
“That’s going to be something Highway Patrol is going to determine through video, witness statements and scientific methods so right now we don’t have any information,” Yokoyama said. “The information we’re dealing with is very preliminary on multiple fronts.”
Both officers suffered major injuries. Yokohama said Alhambra Fire Department paramedics took both men to Huntington Memorial Hospital in Pasadena.
Stringer died as a result of his injuries at about 6 a.m.
Mejia underwent surgery Sunday night and was reported to be in stable condition on Monday, according to the Los Angeles Times.
The CHP is in charge of the investigation. They have not yet said who was at fault or whether either officer was wearing a seat belt.
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