Deputy Frank V. Trejo

Deputy Frank V. Trejo

Sonoma County Sheriff's Office, California

End of Watch Wednesday, March 29, 1995

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Frank V. Trejo

Deputy Frank Trejo was shot and killed investigating a suspicious vehicle parked at a closed business.

At approximately 11:30 p.m. Deputy Trejo saw an occupied pickup in the Santa Rosa Saddlery parking lot on Highway 12, west of Santa Rosa. The business was closed, so Deputy Trejo stopped to investigate. In the vehicle was a recently paroled inmate from Pelican Bay State Prison with an extensive criminal history, and also a member of the infamous prison gang the Aryan Brotherhood, and a female companion. The two occupants were casing a tavern next to the closed business, intending on committing an armed robbery. As Deputy Trejo was walking toward the suspect vehicle, the paroled inmate pulled out a sawed-off shotgun and confronted him at the rear of the pickup. He shot Deputy Trejo in the face with the shotgun, killing him instantly, then took Deputy Trejo's gun and fled the area. The two then forced their way into a house a short distance away and took a family hostage.

The Sheriff's Department was notified of the hostage situation and quickly set up a perimeter around the house with patrol deputies and the S.W.A.T. Team. After several hours, both suspects surrendered to deputies. The shooter was convicted of first-degree murder and sent to death row at San Quentin State Prison to await execution. The companion was convicted of numerous felony offenses associated with this incident and sentenced to 14 years in State prison.

Deputy Trejo's funeral was attended by more than 2,400 officers and citizens.

Deputy Trejo was a 35-year law enforcement veteran and had served with the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office for 15 years. He is survived by his wife, son, and daughter.

Deputy Trejo was awarded a posthumous Gold Medal of Valor for his sacrifice.


  • Age 58
  • Tour 35 years
  • Badge G47

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Sentenced to death

suspicious vehicle

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The world lost a true hero 28 (!) years ago today. Impossible to believe it. You are still missed.

Susan Brummett

March 29, 2024

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