A State Trooper injured last week while assisting Hammond Police has died.
Trooper George Baker was injured May 20, and died today. Baker is survived by his wife Heather, their young daughter Harper, his parents, his sisters, and his extended family. Trooper Baker served as a Trooper at Louisiana State Police Troop L since November of 2017
He is the first trooper to die in the line of duty since Senior Trooper Steven Vincent, Troop D, in August of 2015. Troop L has not lost a Trooper in the line of duty since the passing of Trooper Rudolph H. Miller on September 8th, 1962. Trooper Baker is the 30th Trooper to lose his life in the line of duty in the history of the Louisiana State Police.
Baker was a 33-year-old, 10-year law enforcement and military veteran. A vigil of family, friends, and his fellow Troopers remained at the hospital from the very beginning until his passing.
Here's a video from State Police about him:
Trooper Baker had a lifelong desire of becoming a Louisiana State Trooper. In preparation for that goal, he spent 8 years in the United States Marine Corps Reserve including one combat deployment in the Middle East. He began his law enforcement career with the Greensburg Police Department, where he worked for 4 years. He then served the St. Helena Parish Sheriff’s Office for 3 years before joining the Louisiana State Police.
In a statement to Troopers, State Police Superintendent, Colonel Kevin Reeves said, “Trooper Baker passed today leaving our hearts heavy but full of pride as he exemplified our values of duty, selfless service, and personal courage.” Even after his death, Trooper Baker continues to show his commitment to community and selfless service by donating his organs so that others may live. Arrangements are incomplete at this time, but Trooper Baker will be afforded full honors earned with a line of duty death.
For information on providing assistance to the Baker family during this tragic time, please visit www.latroopers.org and direct donations to the Louisiana Troopers Charities – Trooper Baker.
Gov. John Bel Edwards issued the following statement:
"My heart is heavy at the passing of Trooper Baker, who served the people of our state with honor and dedication and died from injuries sustained in the line of duty. His selfless commitment to his fellow Louisianans represents the best of us and he continues to serve even after his passing by having his organs donated to help others in need. His courage and bravery will never be forgotten."
"Please join Donna and me in praying for Trooper Baker, his wife Heather, daughter Harper, family, friends and countless others as they mourn this great loss. Our thoughts are also with all members of Louisiana State Police, who have lost a true teammate and brother today.”
Baker and another trooper were injured Wednesday at about 2 a.m. while helping Hammond Police in a vehicle pursuit that started in Hammond. Baker and the other trooper were removing a spike strip from a road after it had disabled the suspect vehicle's tires, a release from State Police says.
As Baker and the other trooper were pulling up the spike strip, a Hammond Police unit following the suspect hit them, the release states. One trooper was treated and released with minor injuries. Baker's injuries were critical and for several days troopers and family kept a vigil at the hospital.
According to WBRZ, both suspects in the chase were arrested by Thursday evening. Taylor Cox, 26, was arrested just hours after the pursuit, and the alleged driver, 18-year-old Nathan Anding, was booked Thursday.
Anding is facing several charges related to the chase.
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