Police Officer Clayton Joel Townsend

Police Officer Clayton Joel Townsend

Salt River Police Department, Tribal Police

End of Watch Tuesday, January 8, 2019

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Clayton Joel Townsend

Police Officer Clayton Townsend was struck and killed by a vehicle while conducting a traffic stop on northbound State Route 101 just south of McDowell Road, in Scottsdale at 6:00 pm.

He was approaching the car he had stopped when another vehicle struck him and then struck the stopped vehicle. He was transported to a local hospital where he was pronounced dead.

The driver who struck him admitted to texting and driving at the time of the crash. He was charged with manslaughter, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and endangerment.

Officer Townsend had served with the Salt River Police Department for five years. He is survived by his wife and 10-month-old child.


  • Age 26
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Struck by vehicle
  • Location Arizona

distracted driver, traffic stop

Most Recent Reflection

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For Clayton Townsend and family. Whether you are on a bicycle, motor scooter, skateboard, on foot or racing across the parkinglot in a grocery basket with friends. Your work and dedication to helping people will always be remember. Sometimes there are forces at work that are just beyond our control. Cave folks are not always tame when they emerg, whether that cave is a car, truck, hole in the rock, or building. Thank you for all your dedicated ways of serving. Garbage cans, are an effective means of escape when necessary, these to can be caves for people. No matter what others may say, selflessness in service, putting others first, passing it forward is a passion, a gift a belief. Not just talk. Thank you for not just talking but putting your life on the line always others forward.

Ms. Katarina Whitte
an encouraging word

September 1, 2019

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