Trooper James E. Saunders

Trooper James E. Saunders

Washington State Patrol, Washington

End of Watch Thursday, October 7, 1999

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James E. Saunders

Trooper James Saunders was shot and killed while making a traffic stop near the intersection of South Road 28 & W Lewis Street in Pasco, Washington.

He had radioed into dispatchers with a description of the pickup truck and the license plate. Within one minute of his initial call, a citizen used Trooper Saunders' radio to notify dispatchers that he had been shot. He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The suspect was arrested the following day after officers conducted surveillance on several different locations, looking for the owner of the truck. The man was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life without parole.

Trooper Saunders had served with the Washington State Patrol for nine years. He was survived by his expectant wife and 2-year-old daughter.


  • Age 31
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge 1053

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life

traffic stop

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Thank you for your service and know that your sacrifice will never be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

October 7, 2020

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