The local community and first responders are mourning the death of Whitesboro Police Officer Kevin Crossley, on the 11-year anniversary of another local officer’s death.
Officer Crossley, 34, was killed in an accident while on duty in the village of Whitesboro on Wednesday night. Crossley was a seven-year member of the Whitesboro Police Department, and he also worked part-time with the Whitestown Police Department.
As Crossley’s body was taken to the Onondaga County Medical Examiner’s Office in Syracuse Wednesday night, a police escort was met by dozens of police officers and other first responders from all over the region. Patrol cars lined the route with their lights on as officers stood at attention on the sidewalk outside Upstate Medical University.
And on Thursday afternoon, Officer Crossley’s escort home was welcomed by dozens of officers, patrol cars and several ambulances outside of Dimbleby Funeral Homes in Whitesboro, which will be handling Crossley’s funeral arrangements.
Officers were also seen along the Thruway overpasses en route to Whitesboro as Officer Crossley was brought home.
No stranger to dealing with the death of a local law enforcement officer, Oneida County Sheriff Rob Maciol joined NEWSChannel 2 in studio Thursday evening to shed some light on the aftermath of a local law enforcement officer’s death.
Thursday marks 11 years since Utica Police Officer Thomas Lindsey was shot and killed in the line of duty during a traffic stop in Utica. Other law enforcement deaths in recent years include Oneida County Sheriff’s Deputy Kurt Wyman, who was shot and killed in the line of duty following a standoff in 2011, and New Hartford Police Officer Joseph Corr, who was shot and killed during a suspect pursuit in 2006.
“No matter how large a department is – small, big – you still have to figure out how you can continue to police the community that you’re charged with policing,” Sheriff Maciol said.
“Obviously you’re dealing with the investigation, you’re dealing with the family and friends who are in mourning, you’re dealing with the police officers in that agency that obviously have lost someone very, very close to them. That’s very difficult, and then on top of that the calls for service continue to come in, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so I think it’s all about that thin blue line.”
Maciol says that on Thursday he spent some time with officers he hadn’t seen in years.
“It’s unfortunate that these circumstances bring us together, but when these tragic things happen, we do come together, stronger than anything else that’s out there,” Maciol said.
Maciol says law enforcement officers will come from across the nation for Officer Crossley’s funeral, which has not yet been set.
“I never thought in my wildest dreams that I’d be dealing with so many officers’ deaths,” Maciol said. “In the line of duty deaths; just very, very tragic.”