PHOENIX (AP) — A Maricopa County sheriff’s deputy who died after being beaten by a suspect is being remembered as man who lived his dream to protect and serve.
Mourners and fellow law enforcement officers packed a church Tuesday in the Phoenix suburb of Avondale to honor Deputy Juan “Johnny” Ruiz. Only with the sheriff’s office for three years, the 45-year-old Ruiz was an older recruit. But his family recalled how excited he was to join the sheriff's training academy.
Authorities say Ruiz was attacked and left unconscious Oct. 9 while processing a suspect at a sheriff's substation. He died two days later. His family decided to donate his organs.
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