Year later, chief still feels impact of officer shootings | News
TAMPA, FLORIDA -- Tampa police chief Jane Castor says she'll never forget her reaction to the middle of the night phone call on June 29, 2010.
"This just can't be possible. There's no way that we could have had two officers killed in a traffic stop," she said Wednesday.
Twelve months ago Officers Jeffery Kocab and David Curtis paid the ultimate sacrifice, shot and killed in the line of duty.
Castor says she's constantly reminded of her darkest day as chief, which also included Tampa Bay's largest ever manhunt.
"It is really amazing that a year has passed," she said, "the result of the deaths of Dave and Jeff is that it's just brought us closer together as a department."
While the names of the two officers are already etched in a memorial outside Tampa Police headquarters, a new memorial unveiled Wednesday also honors the pair.
Designed by one of their fellow officers, it's a mural outside the substation Curtis and Kocab worked out of, that all officers will now walk through as they begin their shift.
Not only is it a tribute, but Castor says it's also a reminder of the dangers officers face every day.
"It will assist in the healing process," she said.
A process she admits continues to this day.
As for Dontae Morris, the man accused of gunning down the two officers, he is still awaiting trial.
Castor conceded Wednesday she's frustrated their investigation hasn't been able to link more people to helping Morris hideout for three days after the shootings.