|V.I. Police Officer Colvin Georges|
V.I. Police Officer Colvin Georges, who was shot in the line of duty May 26, died early Saturday morning at a Miami hospital.
Georges and Officer Aaron Hodge both came under fire while approaching a suspect at the Contant Car Wash on St. Thomas, near where 22-year-old Jose Fuentes was gunned down the night before.
Police returned fire and one suspect, Gerald Jackson, was killed.
Hodge was released from the Schneider Regional Medical Center a few days after the incident. Georges, gravely wounded, paralyzed from the neck down, was airlifted to Florida a few days after the shooting.
Georges joined the force after graduating from police academy in 2010, where he earned the exemplary service award and scored the highest physical fitness score for men.
Jackson had been arrested in April after being found with crack cocaine, powder cocaine and marijuana packaged for sale, and a handgun.
Community leaders and elected officials reacted with sadness and outrage to the news, while praising Georges for his selfless devotion to his community.
“It is an outrage that our officers who are doing their job, putting their lives on the line every day to protect us, could be shot down,” Delegate Donna Christensen said in a statement. “He did his job with distinction in his short tenure with VIPD and fought valiantly to overcome his devastating injuries. We are immensely proud of him for the character and bravery he has shown.”
Gov. John deJongh Jr offered heartfelt sympathies to Officer Georges’ parents.
“We will remember Officer Georges for his service to the community during his career with the VIPD and perhaps, more importantly, we will remember his fight to overcome the grave injuries he sustained in the gunfight against the criminal element,” DeJongh said in a statement.
“We all share the grief of the loss of this public servant. ... Our community appreciates the efforts of these dedicated law enforcement professionals and public servants who take to the streets of the Virgin Islands each day to ensure the safety of our communities,” deJongh said.