Police Officer Donald Sahota

Police Officer Donald Sahota

Vancouver Police Department, Washington

End of Watch Saturday, January 29, 2022

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Donald Sahota

Police Officer Donald Sahota was inadvertently shot and killed by a Clark County Sheriff's Office deputy while attempting to apprehend a robbery suspect who was attempting to break into his home.

The suspect had fled police after robbing a gas station on Northeast 117th Avenue in Vancouver. Officers used spike strips to immobilize the car, but the suspect was able to flee on foot. As deputies were searching for the suspect a woman called 911 reporting that a man who fit the robbery suspect's description had pounded on her front door asking for help and claimed he had been involved in a collision. She informed the call-taker that her husband was an off-duty officer and had gone outside to detain the man. The suspect and Officer Sahota became engaged in a struggle during which Officer Sahota was stabbed several times and dropped his firearm. The suspect broke free and began running toward Officer Sahota's house.

Officer Sahota retrieved his firearm and ran after the suspect as Clark County deputies arrived. One of the deputies perceived Officer Sahota as an armed suspect and shot him, not realizing he was an officer and the homeowner.

The suspect was taken into custody without further incident. He was charged with attempted first-degree murder, first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary, third-degree assault, and possession of a stolen vehicle.

Officer Sahota had served with the Vancouver Police Department for almost eight years. He had previously served 17 years with the Gresham Police Department and 2 1/2 years with the Port of Portland Police Department in Oregon. He is survived by his wife and two children.

Bio

  • Age 52
  • Tour 27 years, 6 months
  • Badge 1531

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire (Inadvertent)
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Arrested

at home, mistaken identity, off-duty, robbery

Most Recent Reflection

View all 87 Reflections

The policeman stood and faced his God,
Which must always come to pass.
He hoped his shoes were shining.
Just as brightly as his brass.

"Step forward now, policeman.
How shall I deal with you?
Have you always turned the other cheek?
To My church have you been true?"

The policeman squared his shoulders and said,
"No, Lord, I guess I ain't,
Because those of us who carry badges
can't always be a saint.

I've had to work most Sundays,
and at times my talk was rough,
and sometimes I've been violent,
Because the streets are awfully tough.

But I never took a penny,
That wasn't mine to keep....
Though I worked a lot of overtime
When the bills got just too steep.

And I never passed a cry for help,
Though at times I shook with fear.
And sometimes, God forgive me,
I've wept unmanly tears.

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here.
They never wanted me around
Except to calm their fear.

If you've a place for me here,
Lord, It needn't be so grand.
I never expected or had too much,
But if you don't.....I'll understand.

There was silence all around the throne
Where the saints had often trod.
As the policeman waited quietly,
For the judgment of his God.

"Step forward now, policeman,
You've borne your burdens well.
Come walk a beat on Heaven's streets,
You've done your time in hell

Rest in peace brother, we have the watch.

Constable David Bray
New Zealand Police

April 22, 2022

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