New Haven, CT – New Haven Police Department (NHPD) Officer Diane Gonzalez died in the line of duty Jan. 10, more than 13 years after she was left in a coma due to an on-duty car crash.
Officer Gonzalez was 47 years old and had been with the NHPD for 13 years when she was dispatched to a report of a violent domestic dispute at 11:23 p.m. on Sept. 9, 2008, the Hartford Courant reported.
The caller told the dispatcher a man was beating a woman in front of her children at 53 Maltby Street.
“Are they coming?” the frantic caller asked in the 911 call as the woman screamed in the background. “He’s going to kill her!”
Officer Gonzalez and NHPD Sergeant Dario “Scott” Aponte, 43, were responding to the call in separate patrol cars when they crashed into each other at the intersection of Chapel Street and East Street, the Hartford Courant reported.
They were less than two miles away from the scene of the domestic disturbance when the horrific collision occurred.
“If one of those vehicles had gotten to that intersection five seconds later, they would have gotten to that call and handled it,” Police Chief James Lewis said at the time, according to the Hartford Courant.
Sgt. Aponte, a 17-year NHPD veteran, was killed instantly.
He left behind his wife, a fellow NHPD officer, who had recently given birth to their fourth child, the New Haven Independent reported.
Rescuers had to cut Officer Gonzalez out of the wreckage of her police cruiser.
The veteran officer suffered a traumatic brain injury in the crash and remained in a coma for the rest of her life, the Hartford Courant reported.
When additional officers arrived at the scene of the domestic disturbance, the victim and the suspect were gone, according to police.
Investigators were able to track them down later, but the woman did not have any visible injuries would not cooperate with police, the Hartford Courant reported.
No arrests were made.
Officer Gonzalez succumbed to her injuries on Monday, according to her department.
She leaves behind her two daughters, her son, and her grandchildren.
🔹 Blessed Are The Peacemakers 🔹
Police Officer Diane Gonzalez
New Haven Police Department, Connecticut
— National Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) (@GLFOP) January 12, 2022
Bunting outside #NewHaven PD tonight to honor and remember Officer Diane Gonzalez.
Chief Dominguez says she looked up to Gonzalez when she was a young patrol officer.
How she’s being remembered tonight at 8 on WCTX. @WTNH pic.twitter.com/uXzcTVvRdh
— Stephanie Simoni (@StephanieSimoni) January 12, 2022
Honoring New Haven, Connecticut, Police Department Police Officer Diane Gonzalez, died January 10, 2022, from brain injuries from an accident in September, 2008 when her Patrol Car was hit by another Patrol Car, and she lapsed into a coma. Honor her so she is not forgotten. pic.twitter.com/dXuvS3Y9v2
— Steve Wightman (@stevewightman1) January 12, 2022
Rest In Peace: Police Officer Diane Gonzalez. New Haven Police Department, Connecticut. End of Watch Monday, January 10, 2022. @NewHavenPolice @PoliceOne @ODMP #BlueLivesMatter #officerdown pic.twitter.com/ObJwqbNoxV
— R Cook (@retiredNCSHP) January 12, 2022
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of New Haven Police Department Officer Diane Gonzalez, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.