A California Highway Patrol motorcycle officer was fatally injured Saturday in a crash on the southbound 15 Freeway in Lake Elsinore, a collision that closed the southbound lanes at Lake Street for hours and injured at least two other people.
The officer was identified by the CHP on its Facebook page as Sgt. Steve Licon.
Law enforcement officers from multiple agencies and medical personnel assembled outside Inland Valley Regional Medical Center in Wildomar to honor Licon as his body was taken from the hospital to the Riverside County Coroner’s office in Perris. Residents and officials lined roads for the procession.
The crash happened just before 4:30 p.m., when a black sedan crashed into the CHP motorcycle officer who was on the right shoulder of the 15 Freeway with another vehicle, according to CHP logs. Broadcast helicopter footage showed the motorcycle entangled between two cars.
A SigAlert was issued and the CHP log indicated the officer injured in the crash was transported to the Wildomar hospital.
The Riverside County District Attorney’s Office is assisting in the investigation, DA’s spokesman John Hall said.
Tawny Cabral, spokeswoman for the Cal Fire/Riverside County Fire Department, said three total people were transported via ambulance to the Wildomar hospital. The Fire Department didn’t immediately have information on the conditions of those who survived.
The crash happened in an area that has seen heavy traffic in recent weeks because of the spectacular poppy blooms in the nearby hills. It wasn’t immediately known if the flower-viewing traffic contributed to the collision.
From CHP HQ- Our hearts are heavy after the immeasurable loss of a friend, father, husband, and hero. Sergeant Steve Licon, #13348, of the CHP Riverside Area made the ultimate sacrifice today while serving his community. Rest easy brother, we have the watch from here. pic.twitter.com/Sr0xkqwiYE
— CHP Placerville (@CHPPlacerville) April 7, 2019