Patrolman David L. Coker

Patrolman David L. Coker

New Mexico State Police, New Mexico

End of Watch Sunday, November 18, 1979

David L. Coker

Patrolman David Coker was shot and killed during a traffic stop on I-40, near Santa Rosa.

The driver immediately exited his car and approached Patrolman Coker's patrol car, where he produced a .38 caliber handgun. He ordered Patrolman Coker to empty his service revolver on the passenger seat. He then had him walk down an embankment on the side of the road.

As Patrolman Coker took off his coat he retrieved his backup weapon from a holster sewn into the coat. Both he and the man fired at the same time. Patrolman Coker's shot struck the subject in the chest, but the man's shot struck Patrolman Coker in face, killing him instantly. The man stumbled back to the patrol car where he collapsed and dropped his weapon. A passerby kicked the handgun away and detained the man, who later died.

Patrolman Coker had served with the New Mexico State Police for four years.


  • Age 31
  • Tour 4 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .38 caliber
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 24 Reflections

Trooper Croker killed in the line of duty. My husband I was there when everything unfolded. Seen the suspect exit his vehicle and then the moment Trooper Croker was killed. My husband Dan Boone was the person who kicked the gun away from the suspect and waited for help to arrive. I stated in our car with our newborn. I've never been able to forget how horrible this day was. My husband tried to stay with the Trooper until helped arrive. I will never forget you Trooper Croker I want to alway remember and honor you.

Theresa Boone Duprey

November 26, 2017

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