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Police Officer II Russell Lee Peterson, Jr. | Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Nevada Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Nevada

Police Officer II

Russell Lee Peterson, Jr.

Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, Nevada

End of Watch: Tuesday, March 24, 1998

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 40

Tour: 8 years

Badge # 3879

Cause: Weather/Natural disaster

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Police Officer Russell Peterson was killed while participating in a training exercise for the police department's Search and Rescue Team.

He and another team member of the 6-person team were climbing a frozen water wall that was approximately 160-feet high. The other climber went up first and as he prepared to change off the safety system the ice above him began to break off. Officer Peterson, who was still on the ground, held onto the rope so that his partner could remain against the wall and avoid being hit by the large pieces of ice. One of the chunks of ice struck Officer Peterson on the head, breaking his neck. Once the landslide stopped, his partner climbed down and determined Officer Peterson had suffered fatal injuries. He snowshoed to a nearby camp where he was able to call for help.

Officer Peterson's body was located under the landslide debris, still holding onto the rope which was able to hold his partner against the rock wall, saving his life.

Officer Peterson had turned 40 the day before his death. He is survived by his wife.

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Thank you for offering your life for another. That is the definition of a true hero!!!

Correctional Officer Joel Tyning 24228
Nevada Department of Corrections
July 15, 2015


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