Paterson, NJ – Paterson Police Detective Tamby Yagan was killed in the line of duty on Sunday morning, when his patrol car crashed into a parked vehicle.
Det. Yagan, 41, was the only person involved in the collision, Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdes and Paterson Police Chief Troy Oswald said in a joint statement, according to the South Passaic Daily Voice.
He was rushed to a local hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries, they said.
It was unclear whether or not Det. Yagan suffered a medical event prior to the fatal crash.
“The cause of the crash remains under investigation,” Valdes and Chief Oswald said. “More information will be released once it becomes available.”
Det. Yagan, a 12-year veteran of the Patterson Police Department, began his public service career as a volunteer firefighter in nearby Prospect Park, borough Chief Douglas Struyk told NorthJersey.com.
“He would give you the shirt off his back,” Chief Struyk said. “You could call him any time of night and he would be there for you.”
In 2005, Det. Yagan joined the Paterson PD.
“He was a great worker, and his death is truly a loss to Paterson’s Police Department and its residents, Chief Oswald told NorthJersey.com.
“He was a cop’s cop,” Police Director Jerry Speziale said. “He’s somebody who went above and beyond. He was a true community person.”
Director Speziale noted that Det. Yagan was also a devoted father to his young son, Dunay.
“Detective Yagan served with honor and possessed an unwavering dedication to the Paterson Police Department and to the citizens of the City of Paterson,” his department said on Monday.
Prospect Park Mayor Mohamed Khairullah, who had been friends with Det. Yagan since childhood, said the officer was “one of the kindest souls” he had ever met.
“There’s not a mean bone in his body,” Khairullah said. “His death is a tremendous loss to the city of Paterson and to his family and friends.”
In addition to his 4-year-old son, Det. Yagan leaves behind his mother, brother, three sisters, and his “beloved girlfriend,” the Paterson PD said.
Det. Yagan will be laid to rest on Tuesday.
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Paterson Police Detective Tamby Yagan, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.