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Officer Jeremy Henwood is seen at the counter as 13 year old Daveon Taylor approaches him
Most of us are well aware that many police officers actually are concerned with the safety of citizens and actually do care about the communities they police even though the news far too often gives us examples of those who don't.
In this case unfortunately, we learn of an officer who cares after they've been brutally gunned down in an unprovoked attack in San Diego earlier this month.
On August 6, 36 year old officer Jeremy Henwood stopped into McDonald's. While in line ordering, a young teen boy comes in and wants to buy some cookies for a dollar. The teen ,Daveon Taylor, is short a dime and asks to officer if he could help him out. The officer doesn't give him a dime, but instead outright buys the cookies for Dayveon.
As they waited for the officer's sweet iced tea and the cookies, Daveon says Officer Henwood sparked up a conversation with him. "He was like what do you want to be when you grow up? And I said an NBS star. He said that takes hard work," Daveon recalled.
Daveon's father Jerry told News 8, "He took the time to have a conversation with my son and that means a lot, because he paid it forward.. For 2 to 3 minutes, he bettered something in his (my son's) life he will never forget." Jerry Tinsley, a retired Navy veteran, says he was overwhelmed when shown the surveillance video for the first time, "Wow, really seeing this and knowing what happened to the fellow officer and marine, it's amazing, it was bringing tears to my eyes."
Less than 5 minutes after Officer Henwood left that McDonald's restaurant, he was ambushed and shot while on routine patrol by suicidal gunman Dejon White.
Officer Henwood and the man who murdered him, 23 year old Dejon White
"It's just crazy," Daveon said, "Why did he have to die like that , after he did a good thing for a little kid.. after that.. the last good deed he had to do and then his life was taken."
Daveon says, though Officer Henwood is gone, he will live on as his role model and inspiration."It's going to help big because I'm going to think about the guy who lost his life and the family that loved him so, he tells me to work hard, I'm going to work hard."
Authorities said Dejon White had come behind the officer’s car and flashed his headlights. The officer, possibly thinking the motorist was in trouble, pulled into the next lane. White drove alongside him, pointed a shotgun out the window and fired at Henwood, striking him in the head.
White was killed about 30 minutes later when he went to grab a shotgun and was killed in a hail of police gunfire.
He had left behind a two-page suicide note in his nearby apartment.
Several minutes before the officer’s shooting, White had walked up to 23-year-old Martin Hana in the parking lot of an El Cajon-area In-N-Out Burger and shot him in the face. Hana suffered severe facial injuries and is continuing to undergo multiple surgeries to recover.