Police Officer Shawn Carson

Police Officer Shawn Carson

Jersey City Police Department, New Jersey

End of Watch Sunday, December 25, 2005

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Shawn Carson

Police Officer Shawn Carson and Police Officer Robert Nguyen were killed when their patrol truck drove off of the Hackensack River Bridge and plunged 45-feet into the Hackensack River during a period of heavy fog at 8:20 pm.

The officers had driven across the lift-bridge to place flares on the Newark side to warn drivers about a problem with the bridge's operations. As they set the flares, the bridge operator opened the span to allow a tugboat to pass underneath. The bridge's safety bar and warning lights, which had not been functional for two days, failed to activate when the span opened.

As the officers returned to the Jersey City side of the bridge, their vehicle drove off of the open portion of the span and fell to the river below, killing both officers.

Officer Carson was pulled from the water two hours after the incident and taken to University Hospital where he was pronounced dead. Officer Nguyen's body was recovered on December 29th, 2005, by members of the New York City Police Department's Dive Unit. His body was snagged under concrete pilings in 50 feet of water some 90 feet from where the truck went into the river.

Officer Carson had served with the Jersey City Police Department for 16 years.


  • Age 40
  • Tour 16 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Automobile crash

Most Recent Reflection

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Hi Shawn,
My name is Jaime. Your friend Robert Conley is my husband. I wanted to let you, and your loved ones know that the sound of your name still resonates in this cruel world. Your story is still spoken, your legacy lives, and will for generations to come.
Today, Robert told our daughter all about Uncle Shawn. He told her that he sometimes holds her an extra minute, or gives her an extra kiss, for you. He says you would have been an amazing Uncle to her, and wishes we would have been able to get to know you.
He credits his survival of those unforgiving New Jersey streets, to the gracious hospitality and compassion you showed him. You were his light, on the darkest days of his life. His guardian angel in the flesh. He says he is not only still alive, but a better person, a better man for having known you, for the honor of having your friendship.
Thank you Shawn, my family will be forever grateful to you and the impact you had on this Earth.

Jaime Conley
A humble wife

December 27, 2018

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