The Latest: Officers salute casket of hero California deputy

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on the funeral for a sheriff’s sergeant who responde to a mass shooting at a Southern California bar (all times local):

12:15 p.m.

Scores of uniformed police officers have gathered at a church in suburban Los Angeles ahead of the funeral for a sheriff’s sergeant who died as he confronted a gunman opening fire in a country music bar.

The officers stood solemnly at attention Thursday, then saluted as an honor guard wheeled in the flag-draped coffin of Ventura County sheriff’s Sgt. Ron Helus while the song “Amazing Grace” played.

The officers then joined mourners inside Calvary Community Church in Westlake Village.

Helus was killed in a gunfight last week with a man who had opened fire on people at the popular Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks.

Authorities hailed the sergeant’s quick action, saying it gave some people time to escape.

The gunman killed 12 people before shooting himself to death.


9:53 p.m.

Fellow sheriff’s deputies knew Ron Helus as a “cop’s cop,” someone who, as one put it, would go to the ends of the earth to solve a crime.

On Thursday, Helus’ colleagues and others will gather at a Westlake Village, California, church, where he will be hailed as a hero.

The 54-year-old Ventura County sheriff’s deputy was killed last week in an exchange of gunfire with a man raking a Southern California bar with gunfire.

Authorities say Helus’ instantaneous decision to confront the shooter, rather than wait for help, allowed others at the Borderline Bar & Grill in Thousand Oaks to flee.

Helus is survived by his wife and son.

The gunman killed 12 people before shooting himself to death.

Categories: California News