Mission Police Officer killed in the line of duty – Community in mourning and asking for prayers.
Mission, TX- The City of Mission and the Mission Police Department are in mourning today. A longtime officer, Corporal Jose Luis “Speedy” Espericueta, was shot and killed on Thurs. June 20, 2019 when he responded to back up an officer on a call for help near Stewart Road and Business 83. A woman flagged down police after her son reportedly shot at her car with a handgun.
“Our officers, as well as everyone in the line of duty, work in an incredibly difficult environment. It can be extremely dangerous,” Mission Police Chief Robert Dominguez said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to Cpl. Espericueta’s family, first and foremost, and also to the brothers and sisters who had the privilege to work alongside him.”
Cpl. Espericueta spotted 33-year-old Juan Carlos Chapa Jr. leaving the scene near the 1700 block of Business 83 and attempted to make contact. Chapa ran from the scene, turned and began shooting, striking Espericueta. Cpl. Espericueta then returned fire as did other arriving officers. The suspect was struck several times in the exchange. He was transported to the hospital where he died. Cpl. Espericueta succumbed to his injuries at 10:05 p.m. after being transported to McAllen Medical Center.
“I ask you to continue to pray and support officer Espericueta’s family and our law enforcement family,” said Chief Dominguez. “My gratitude goes out to our community for the outpouring of prayers and support. We have received numerous calls from around the state and around the nation for our fallen hero.”
Cpl. Espericueta was a 18-year veteran of the Mission Police Department. He leaves behind his wife and two children.
“Our hearts are with the officer’s family. We cannot even begin to understand the pain his family and our law enforcement community is experiencing right now,” Mayor Dr. Armando O’Cana said. “There are no words to convey the sadness we feel or the depth of how heartbroken we are. It is a sad day in Mission. The City of Mission is fully standing by the family during this tragedy.”
The Texas Rangers will lead the investigation into the homicide.
“We are devastated. Cpl. Espericueta lost his life protecting our community. There is no way to explain the loss we feel,” City Manager Randy Perez said. “We are praying fiercely as a community and our hearts are with his family and all our Mission PD family. This is a senseless act and he died a hero.”