Miami Police motorcycle officer killed in multi-car crash in southwest Miami-Dade
A City of Miami Police motorcycle officer who was involved in a major crash
Tuesday in southwest Miami-Dade has died.
The crash, which happened at the intersection of Southwest 8th Street and
137th Avenue, had the road shut down for several hours and injured a dozen
Miami Police identified the officer as 53-year-old Jorge Sanchez. He was a 21-
year police veteran.
According to the City of Miami Police Department, Sanchez first served as a
patrol officer, then moved onto criminal investigations, and for the last 7 years
he was part of the traffic enforcement unit as a motorcycle officer.
At a somber news conference Tuesday evening, Chief Rodolfo Llanes
expressed grief, "[Sanchez] served this department with dignity, strength, and
professionalism. I and all the officers, civilian staff that work here will miss him
Hours after the crash, fellow motorcycle officers led a procession - an
ambulance carrying Sanchez's body - from Kendall Regional Medical Center to
the Medical Examiner's office.
As word spread of Sanchez's death, Gov. Rick Scott and police agencies
across South Florida sent their condolences to the Miami Police department.
At least six cars were involved in the crash, with one resting on its side. Debris
was scattered across the intersection.
Miami-Dade Fire Rescue said 12 people were injured, two in critical condition.
Five people were taken to Kendall Regional Medical Center and Baptist
Hospital. Officials have not released their identities.
Police say Officer Sanchez was on his way to work at the Miami Police
Department headquarters. Sanchez was heading eastbound on 8th Street
waiting to turn left on 137th Avenue when he was rear-ended by an SUV,
Jose Reyes described the harrowing moment when the officer was hit.
"He flew maybe 25 or 30 feet. That's all I could say. When we responded to the
officer, me and my wife, he wasn't responsive," Reyes said.
Florida Highway Patrol has not identified the driver who hit the officer. They
have not confirm whether speed, drugs or alcohol are factors in the crash.
Alberto Lugo said he was behind one of the cars that was hit. He shared
pictures of the chaotic scene moments after impact.
"It was pretty shocking because the only one we could see in the middle of the
road is the officer. We didn't see the other. Everybody else was still in their
cars," Lugo said.
The President of the Miami Fraternal Order of Police, Javier Ortiz, released a
statement on the death of Officer Sanchez:
"I regret to inform you that Officer Jorge Sanchez has passed away while
performing his duties as a law enforcement officer. Brother Jorge was
riding his MPD motorcycle when he was struck by a vehicle. He was
transported to Kendall Regional Hospital. The Fraternal Order of Police
responded to the hospital soon after the crash. Chief Llanes will have a
press conference at Miami Police Headquarters at 1900 HRS. The FOP is
working with the family and the MPD on funeral arrangements. Please
pray for his family. Special thanks to Miami-Dade Police, Miami-Dade Fire
Rescue, Miami Beach Police and the Florida Highway Patrol for their
Officer Sanchez is survived by his three children, mother, ex-wife, and fiance.
His son, Eric, is also a City of Miami police officer.
Officer Jorge Sanchez