An officer from the Long Beach Police Department who served as an Army Ranger through two tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan was killed in a motorcycle accident Saturday night in Laguna Beach.
According to the California Highway Patrol, 42 year old Jon Coutchie was killed in a collision with a pickup truck that threw him from his motorcycle near the intersection of Cleo Street and Pacific Coast Highway at approximately 11:30 p.m. Coutchie was reportedly responding to a reckless driver call when the accident took place, just 30 minutes before his shift was set to end. He was pronounced dead at the scene by responding officers. None of the three occupants inside the truck were hurt.
An American flag was draped over Coutchie’s body while still at the crash site, a gesture by the Laguna Beach Police Employee’s Association “as an honor to his sacrifice as an Army Ranger and Laguna Beach Police Offer.” A message posted on the association’s Facebook page said, “We will forever miss and love Jon here at the Police Department and will grieve along with the citizens of this community.”
At the time of the accident, Coutchie’s motorcycle’s lights and sirens were not running, says the CHP, who added that the influence of drugs or alcohol has been ruled out. An investigation into the cause of the crash is still ongoing.
California Attorney General Kamala Harris called his death a “tragic loss”, issuing a statement saying “I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues in the Laguna Beach Police Department. The people of California will always remember his service.”
Coutchie joined the army following 9/11, serving two tours of duty in Iraq and Afghanistan as a Ranger. After leaving the military, he served as a part-time jailer for the Long Beach PD before becoming a full time motorcycle officer in 2009.
If you or someone you know has been injured in a motorcycle accident such as this, you should seek help, as there are legal protections in place to help those who’ve suffered injury get back on their feet. With the help of an experienced Los Angeles motorcycle accident lawyer, compensation can be recovered to help pay for things like hospital visits, surgeries, physical therapy and more.
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