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Hero Down: Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Deputy Joel Baker Dies In Crash On His Way To Work

Lehi, UT – Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office (SLCSO) Deputy Joel Baker died in a two-vehicle crash on Nov. 12 while driving to work.

The 33-year-old deputy was traveling eastbound on Mountain View Corridor at approximately 4:30 a.m. when a cement truck traveling south on Redwood Road ran through a red light and slammed into him, The Salt Lake Tribune reported.

Deputy Baker suffered catastrophic injuries in the crash and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Lehi Police Department (LPD) said the truck driver has been cooperating with investigators, KSL reported.

The investigation into the fatal wreck remained ongoing.

The SLCSO confirmed the young deputy’s death in a press release on Nov. 16.

“We are lost for words as we work through the tragedy and loss of Deputy Joel Baker,” the sheriff’s office said. “Our thoughts are with him and his family during this difficult time.”

Deputy Baker worked as a correctional officer at the Utah State Penitentiary for many years prior to joining the SLCSO, according to his obituary.

He was hired by the sheriff’s office in 2020.

“Joel will be deeply missed by everyone who knew him,” the SLCSO told The Salt Lake Tribune in a statement. “He was very loved by his coworkers and will be remembered as a kind and generous person.”

Deputy Baker leaves behind his wife, Valerie, and his son, Grayson, according to his obituary.

He is also survived by his mother and his six siblings.

A fundraising page established to help his young family in the wake of their loss has raised more than $19,600 so far.

Deputy Baker was laid to rest on Nov. 19.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Salt Lake County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Joel Baker, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.

Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

View all articles
Written by Holly Matkin


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