Gov. Newsom Speaks On Deaths Of Alameda Deputy And LA Officer

Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a shelter-in-place order for all of California, beginning March 20, 2020.
Photo credit Office of Governor of California

On Saturday, Gov. Gavin Newsom offered condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of Alameda County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Oscar Rocha and Los Angeles Police Department Officer Valentin Martinez, who both died of COVID-19 related complications this week. 

"The deaths of these two heroes is a very real and painful reminder of the risks these men and women face every single day protecting the people of California," Gov. Newsom said in a statement.

It is with tremendous sadness we report Alameda County Deputy Sheriff Oscar Rocha passed away this evening at 6:45pm from complications due to COVID-19. He put up a courageous fight to the end and will never be forgotten. May he rest in eternal peace. EOW 7/23/20.

— Alameda County Sheriff (@ACSOSheriffs) July 24, 2020

Deputy Rocha, 57, died Thursday night from complications relating to COVID-19, following three weeks in intensive care.  

He is survived by his wife, two sons, a stepdaughter and stepson, and his parents.  

A soon-to-be father, a partner, a brother, a son. As courageous in his fight against COVID as he was patrolling the streets and serving Angelenos.Officer Valentin “Val” Martinez, Serial #38701, you are End of Watch Sir. Rest In Peace.

— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) July 24, 2020

Officer Martinez, 45, had been fighting COVID-19 since May 24, and died Friday from complications due to the virus.  

The father-to-be is survived by his sister, brothers, parents and partner, who is expecting twins.

Many law enforcement officials also expressed condolences for the fallen deputy and officer on social media, including California Highway Patrol Commissioner Warren Stanley. 

On behalf of the women and men of the CHP, I am profoundly saddened to learn of the death of @ACSOSheriffs Deputy Oscar Rocha and @LAPDMission Officer Valentin Martinez, who both lost their valiant battle with COVID-19. Our condolences to their families, friends and colleagues.

— Warren Stanley (@CHPCommissioner) July 25, 2020

Flags at the State Capitol will be flown at half-staff in honor of Deputy Rocha and Officer Martinez.