In a tragic ending to a weekend of campaign stops, a motorcycle police officer in President Barack Obama’s motorcade died Sunday after being struck by a pickup truck. The officer had been helping with security during President Obama’s visit to Florida.
Officer Bruce St. Laurent, 55, was killed as he took part in the motorcade escorting the president to a campaign event at the Palm Beach County Convention Center. St. Laurent, from the nearby Jupiter Police Department, was on his motorcycle preparing to shut down Interstate 95 when he was hit by a vehicle, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s spokeswoman Teri Barbera told WPTV. He was taken to nearby St. Mary’s Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. Barbera told the AP that an investigation was ongoing and no charges had yet been filed against the driver of the pickup truck.
St. Laurent was a 20-year veteran of the department, spending the last 18 years as a motorcycle officer, said Sgt. Scott Pascarella, spokesman for the Jupiter Police Department told The Palm Beach Post.“We didn’t lose a co-worker. We lost a friend,” said Sgt. Scott Pascarella, Jupiter police spokesman, who trained St. Laurent. “He would do anything for anyone.”
President Obama was notified of the tragedy by the U.S. Secret Service. White House press secretary Jay Carney said, “Our thoughts and prayers are with the officer’s family.” The Secret Service also issued a statement to WPTV: “The Secret Service extends their deepest sympathies to the officer’s family and to the Jupiter Police Department.”