Today we honor Officers Frago, #6520, Gore, #6547, Alleyn, #6290 and Pence, # 6885. On April 6, 1970, the four officers were killed during the “Newhall Incident.”
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The Newhall Incident was a shootout between two heavily armed criminals and officers of the CHP in the Newhall unincorporated area of Los Angeles County, California on April 6, 1970. In less than 5 minutes, four CHP officers were killed in what was at the time the deadliest day in the history of California law enforcement.
At approximately 11:55 p.m., CHP officers Walt Frago and Roger Gore conducted a traffic stop of Bobby Davis and Jack Twinning in conjunction with an incident involving the pair that had been reported to the CHP minutes earlier. After stopping in a restaurant parking lot and initially cooperating with the officers, Twinning and Davis opened fire and killed both officers. Minutes later, Officers George Alleyn and James Pence arrived on the scene and engaged Twinning and Davis in a shootout. A passerby picked up one of the officers’ weapons and opened fire on the perpetrators; however, the three were outgunned and both Alleyn and Pence suffered fatal injuries while the passerby ran out of ammunition and took cover in a ditch. A third CHP patrol car arrived on the scene and the officer inside briefly exchanged gunfire with the perpetrators, but they were able to flee the scene.
Over three hours later, Davis stole a vehicle after exchanging gunfire with its owner. He attempted to flee the area; however, he was spotted by police and arrested. Meanwhile, Twinning broke into a house and took one of its occupants hostage. The house was surrounded by deputies of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and at approximately 9:00 a.m., he released the hostage and committed suicide when the deputies entered the house. Davis was sentenced to death but had his sentence commuted to life imprisonment without the possibility of parole in 1973. He killed himself at Kern Valley State Prison in 2009.