Police Officer I Juan Mafnas Santos

Police Officer I Juan Mafnas Santos

Guam Police Department, Guam

End of Watch Friday, July 22, 1966

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Juan Mafnas Santos

Police Officer John Santos was shot and killed after following a car of suspected illegal hunters.

Officer Santos pursued the suspects near the junction of North Tumon and Route 1. He pulled over their vehicle on a secluded section of the road and situated his patrol car directly in front of their vehicle. He was shot from behind while still in the squad car. There were two shots fired into the rear windshield of the patrol car striking him in the back and in the head. His body was found slumped forward in the driver’s seat.

His assailants fled the scene, but the case was later solved. Three youths and two adults were arrested and it was learned the individuals plan was to ambush the officer. The two adults were convicted of second degree manslaughter. The juveniles were remanded to juvenile court.

A section of road was named Santos Road in his honor.

Officer Santos had served with the Guam Police Department for five years. He was survived by his expectant wife and two sons.

Bio

  • Age 30
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge 32

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Not available

Most Recent Reflection

View all 17 Reflections

55 years ago today you died. Mom has never recovered from your loss. You were her first love and when she dreams, she dreams of you. Mark and I got to feel your touch. We got to be cradled in your arms, told stories, comforted, and loved by you. While those memories have long been lost to time, we at least had the chance to hear your voice….our brother Bill never did.
Everyone that met you has a story. How loved you were. How you would help anyone in need. You were the kind of police officer that gave people a second chance…ultimately to your own peril. Your loss has rippled through so many lifetimes. The bullet that entered your body, entered our family. So much died that day.
For a long time, it was hard to speak to others about you. Not because I couldn’t find the words, but because there are so many. Years back when Mom, Mark and Bill went to Guam to participate in your memorial, I couldn’t bring myself to go. As much as I wanted to be with them, to be home, I could not go back to the place that took you away from us…to the people that took you away from us. I have spent my life climbing this mountain buried inside me.
Your body may not be here, but you have never stopped protecting us. That late night so many years ago when I was heading home from work. I heard your voice tell me to wait and let the green car pass. I was compelled to turn right, away from the green car and in the opposite direction from home. Confused, I would make a U-turn only to come upon the crash site a mile down the road. Everyone in green car had been killed in the head on collision with a drunk driver. Years earlier when we were swimming and the undertow pulled us all away from the shore. I was twelve and Billy was seven. Mark and Mom were able to get back to shore. I was panicking but felt a calm cover over me. I heard your voice tell me to grab Billy and we made it to a rock. You have always been there, keeping us safe.
I will be 60 this year. I have given you grandchildren and great-grandchildren. They know your story. I know you are with them…as you have always been with me. While your body lies on the other side of the world, the space that separates us is less than a breath.

John E Santos
Son

July 22, 2021

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