Officer Cortijo’s memorial set for Monday
LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Services will be held Monday for a 51-year-old Los Angeles Police Department motorcycle officer who died from injuries he suffered when he was struck by an SUV driven by an allegedly drug-impaired driver in Sun Valley.
Officer Chris Cortijo, a 26-year veteran and former Marine, was struck around 5:30 p.m. April 5 while waiting at a red light at Lankershim Boulevard and Saticoy Street, and he died four days later.
A viewing will take place from 3 to 9 p.m. Monday at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills, according to the LAPD.
A memorial service will be held inside the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels in downtown Los Angeles at 9 a.m. Tuesday, followed by traditional honors outside in the cathedral plaza, police announced.
A funeral procession to Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills and graveside burial service will follow immediately after the church services, according to police.
Cortijo, who worked at the Valley Traffic Division, had twice been named officer of the year, having arrested more than 3,000 DUI suspects during his career.
A Pacoima woman accused of striking the officer had pleaded not guilty to charges of driving under the influence of a drug and possession of cocaine.
Qaneak Shaney Cobb, 33, is accused of slamming her Chevrolet Blazer into the veteran officer as he was stopped at the intersection. The impact left the officer trapped between the Blazer and a Honda Accord that was in front of him.
Police Chief Charlie Beck called it the “ultimate tragedy” that the officer died because someone “callously and wantonly” drove under the influence of drugs.
Mayor Eric Garcetti ordered the city’s flags to be flown at half-staff in memory of Cortijo. He said the officer’s death “reminds all of us of the sacrifice that our bravest heroes make.”
Cortijo is the second LAPD officer to die in the past six weeks. On March 7, Los Angeles police Officer Nicholas Choung Lee, 40, was killed when an out-of-control truck on steep Loma Vista Drive in Beverly Hills struck his patrol car head-on.
An account benefiting Cortijo’s family has been established at the Los Angeles Police Federal Credit Union. Checks payable to the Blue Ribbon Trust for Christopher Cortijo can be sent to the Los Angeles Police Federal Credit Union, attention Blue Ribbon Christopher Cortijo, Post Office Box 10188, Van Nuys, CA 91410.