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North Kansas City Police officer dies after being shot during traffic stop

Police officers look at the car of North Kansas City Police Officer Daniel Vasquez, who was fatally shot during a traffic stop on July 19, 2022.
Bek Shackelford-Nwanganga
/
KCUR 89.3
Police officers look at the car of North Kansas City Police Officer Daniel Vasquez, who was fatally shot during a traffic stop on July 19, 2022.

Officer Daniel Vasquez was a two-year member of the North Kansas City Police Department. He was shot during a traffic stop Tuesday morning.

A North Kansas City police officer has died after he was shot during a traffic stop Tuesday morning.

Authorities say Officer Daniel Vasquez, 32, was trying to pull over a driver at 21st and Clay Street around 10:40 a.m. for having an expired temporary tag. The driver allegedly got out of the car and began shooting at Vasquez before driving away.

Vasquez was brought to North Kansas City Hospital, where he died of his injuries.

Police say the suspect turned himself in just before 2 p.m. and is now in custody. Police have not released his name, but described him as a white male with brown hair.

The Clay County Sheriff's Office said Tuesday that the Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department will handle the investigation.

North Kansas City Police Chief Kevin Freeman said it’s the first death in the line of action for his department.

Vasquez was a two-year member of the North Kansas City Police Department. Freeman described him as a “shining star” of the department.

“To see such a young person so early on in his career lose his life to such senseless violence is unfathomable,” Freeman said.

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Courtesy Photo
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North Kansas City Police
North Kansas City Police Officer Daniel Vasquez, 32, was shot and killed trying to pull over a driver Tuesday morning.

North Kansas City Mayor Bryant DeLong says the whole city is mourning Vasquez’s death.

“It's turned from a sad day to a tragic day. And as I said earlier, I know the whole North Kansas City community stands behind our police force and will be here for the family, we'll be here for all our other employees,” DeLong said. “So please, if you need anything, reach out, follow our social media channels.”

Federal, state and local authorities responded to the scene. DeLong was emotional as he spoke about the law enforcement agencies who arrived at the scene to help.

“There’s always a great sense of community in the Kansas City region and I think you see it again here today,” he said. “Especially in the police community, when they see one of their own get hurt like this, the response is incredible.”

Clay County Sheriff Will Akin talks to reporters after the death of a North Kansas City Police officer on July 19, 2022.
Bek Shackelford-Nwanganga
/
KCUR 89.3
Clay County Sheriff Will Akin talks to reporters after the death of a North Kansas City Police officer on July 19, 2022.

The Kansas City Fraternal Order of Police has set up an online portal for people who want to make contributions to Vasquez’s family. Freeman said several faith based organizations and local partners have reached out offering support.

“Those processes are already starting and the best thing is that we can be there for our officers, for their families and for the family of officer Vasquez,” said Freeman.

Kansas City, Missouri, Police Chief Joseph Mabin expressed his condolences on social media.

“The loss of a police officer is a tragic event for an entire community, and we are grieving this loss with our neighbors in North Kansas City,” Mabin said.

"All of us in Kansas City extend our sincere condolences to Officer Vasquez's family, his law enforcement brothers and sisters, and the people of North Kansas City," tweeted Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas.

Corrected: July 20, 2022 at 1:01 PM CDT
Police on Wednesday clarified that Vasquez died at North Kansas City Hospital.
Bek Shackelford-Nwanganga is a freelance reporter for KCUR 89.3.
Slow news days are a thing of the past. As KCUR’s news director, I want to cut through the noise, provide context to the headlines, and give you news you can use in your daily life – information that will empower you to make informed decisions about your neighborhood, your city and the region. Email me at lisa@kcur.org or follow me on Twitter @larodrig.
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