Officer Gary Lee Hughes

Officer Gary Lee Hughes

California Highway Patrol, California

End of Watch Sunday, May 23, 1976

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Gary Lee Hughes

Officer Hughes was killed when his cruiser was struck from behind by a drunk driver. He and his partner had just arrested another drunk driver and he and Officer Hughes were sitting in the back seat of his cruiser, which was still parked on the shoulder. The driver of a wrecker was preparing to tow the suspect's truck. A pickup truck driven by the second drunk driver swerved off the road and crushed the patrol car killing Officer Hughes and seriously injuring his partner, who was standing outside of the vehicle. The force of the impact slammed the patrol car into his partner and the wrecker driver, who died from injuries he received in a hospital a few days later. The drunk driver who was arrested first was slightly injured.

The 27-year-old driver of the pickup truck was charged with felony drunk driving and two counts of manslaughter.

Officer Hughes had been with the agency for 11 years.


  • Age 38
  • Tour 11 years
  • Badge 3401

Incident Details

  • Cause Vehicular assault
  • Weapon Automobile; Alcohol involved
  • Offender Charged with manslaughter

Most Recent Reflection

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God bless you Gary. We remember you today as we do every single day. God bless your family and every single law enforcement officer in our beloved America. May your family always know we mourn losing you but we don’t mourn your sacrifice and your love for your family and your brothers and sisters in our Beloved Highway Patrol. As we say in our beloved “Corps” “The Few, The Proud, The Brave”!! You fill all three of those words. God bless you and God bless our beloved CHP.......

State Traffic Officer 7185 South LA CHP
California Highway Patrol & US Marine

May 23, 2021

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