Police Officer Erik David Hite

Police Officer Erik David Hite

Tucson Police Department, Arizona

End of Watch Monday, June 2, 2008

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Erik David Hite

Police Officer Erik Hite succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained the previous day by a suspect who had wounded a Pima County Sheriff's Office deputy.

The suspect had fired a rifle into the homes of two neighbors and then fled as the first responding deputy arrived at the location. As the deputy pursued him, the suspect opened fire and wounded him.

Members of the Tucson Police Department spotted the vehicle a short time later and continued pursuing it even as the suspect continued to fire at them. The suspect then turned off of Tanque Verde Road onto Tomahawk Trail, where he stopped his vehicle and set up an ambush.

As Officer Hite turned the corner onto the street, the suspect opened fire from a distance of approximately 80 yards, striking Officer Hite in the head.

The suspect continued to flee and wounded another deputy before finally surrendering. In February 2012 he pleaded guilty to first-degree murder and was sentenced to life in prison. He won't start serving the sentence until it is determined that he is competent enough to have this commitment ended at the state hospital.

Officer Hite was a U.S. Air Force veteran and had served with the Tucson Police Department for four years. He is survived by his wife, adult son, 1-year-old daughter, and parents.

Bio

  • Age 43
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge 46584
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Sunday, June 1, 2008
  • Weapon Rifle
  • Offender Sentenced to life

ambush

Most Recent Reflection

View all 547 Reflections

I cringe and want to cry when I think of how often I've treated those who have done the most dangerous of greasy work so I could sleep safe at night.

I gave Tucson cops disrespect and an arrogant attitude. Reading memorials like this helps me remember that cops are human like I am, but have plenty more guys than I do.

To Officer Hite: thank you for making the ultimate sacrifice so I can sleep soundly at night. I remember first reading about your case in high school, and it's a shame that our paths never crossed.

To all brave Arizona cops who put their lives in the line every day: I'm glad Prop 207 passed. Since I'm no longer a criminal; I can finally stop unjustly hating you, and acknowledge the selfless sacrifice you make every day. Don't let disrespectful smart mouths drag your morale down. You're fighting the good fight, and positively impacting many lives.

PFC Puffer, David C.
74D10 United States Army

August 18, 2021

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