Sgt. Vaca

Sheriff’s Sgt. Dominic Vaca

Board of Supervisors Chairman Curt Hagman has ordered flags at all county government facilities to fly at half-staff in honor of Sheriff’s Sgt. Dominic Vaca, who was killed in the line of duty on Monday, May 31.

Vaca was a 17-year veteran of the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department serving out of the Morongo Basin Station.

According to sheriff's department press release, Vaca was shot in Yucca Valley when a motorcyclist opened fire on deputies who had been pursuing him for not having a license plate.

Vaca was airlifted to a hospital where he died.

The gunman fled on foot and was killed during the gunfight with deputies. A handgun was located at the scene and detectives of the Specialized Investigations Division are conducting the investigation. The suspect was identified as Bilal Winston Shabazz, 29, of Lancaster. It was later determined that Shabazz had a no-bail warrant out of Los Angeles County

Hagman encourages all county residents, businesses and government agencies to observe half-staffed flags.

“Sgt. Vaca lost his life bravely protecting the people of this county. He made the ultimate sacrifice so that someday all of us can live our lives free from the fear of violent crime,” Hagman said.

“Our hearts are broken. Sgt. Vaca was a true hero and a beloved member of our Morongo Basin community,” said Board of Supervisors Vice Chair Dawn Rowe, a resident of Yucca Valley. “Our thoughts, prayers and support are with his dear family during this tragic time.”

A memorial fund has been established to assist Vaca’s wife and children,

The county will keep flags at half-staff until sunset on the day of Vaca’s interment, which has yet to be determined.

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