DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl announced the death of Detective Jorge Del Rio Thursday afternoon.
Del Rio was shot twice in the face Monday night in Dayton while he and other DEA task force agents were conducting a drug bust.
Local, state, and federal leaders are offering their condolences after Biehl announced DelRio had succumbed to his injuries.
Officers from across the Miami Valley lined the halls of Grandview Hospital on Thursday to honor and bid farewell to Del Rio “who one final time acted to save lives through the generous gift of organ donation,” Biehl said.
“We have not even begun to adjust to a professional or personal life that does not include Jorge’s presence. That’s even truer for his family, friends, loved ones who were blessed to know Jorge and benefit from his warm and generous spirit,” Biehl said.
Leaders around the area are honoring Del Rio for his decades of selfless service:
Nan Whaley said on Facebook that she was “heartbroken” by the news of Del Rio’s death.
“I’m heartbroken that Officer Jorge Del Rio has passed away after injuries sustained in the line of duty earlier this week. Since then, we’ve heard countless stories about what he meant to his family, his colleagues, and his community.
In death, as he did in life, he continues to serve others through an organ donation. Our thoughts are with his wife, children, and the entire Dayton Police force,” Whaley said on Facebook.
Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein said in a statement that Del Rio was an “extraordinary public servant.”
“On behalf of the entire City organization, we offer our deep condolences to the family of Detective Del Rio. To lose such an extraordinary public servant is heartbreaking. Let us all honor Jorge’s work by resembling the man that he was – compassionate, dedicated and committed to family and community.”Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein
“Jane and I were saddened to hear the news today regarding Detective Del Rio. As a 30-year veteran of the force, he represented the best of the best. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and your entire team. The Dayton Police have already been through so much this year. I am proud of the service and sacrifices you and your officers continue to make on behalf of Dayton. Please know that you all have my full support.”Sen. Rob Portman
“The death of DEA Task Force Officer Jorge Del Rio is a huge loss to the DEA family and the entire law enforcement community. Our deepest condolences go out to his family. For nearly 30 years, Jorge worked tirelessly to safeguard our community from dangerous drug trafficking organizations and his sacrifice will never be forgotten.”Keith Martin, DEA Special Agent in Charge, Detroit Field Division
“I continue to hold you and the Dayton Police community in my thoughts and prayers. From my time, Jorge, regardless of agency, brought people together, with you I celebrate his life, his contributions, and his sacrifice! He was special indeed. Like all my interactions with Dayton PD, he was a team player! And his law enforcement contributions notwithstanding, he also adored his family…a good person in both uniform and at home. Such a tragic loss for Dayton and all of us who called him a friend. “Chris Melink, Former Supervisory Agent of Dayton DEA office
“We continue our thoughts and prayers for those closest to Det. Del Rio. We will remain focused on seeking justice for him, his family and the Dayton Police Department.”David DeVillers, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio
“Det. Del Rio gave his life defending the Constitution and laws of the United States, after having spent decades working-and risking his life-in support of the same noble goal. A consummate professional beloved by those with whom he worked on the DEA task force and at the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Det. Del Rio embodied the ideal of federal and local cooperation. I personally prosecuted several cases that he investigated. This is very hard. I grieve his loss.”Ben Glassman, Former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio
“DEA Task Force Officer and Dayton Police Department Detective Jorge Del Rio was a witness in one of my first trials in the Dayton office… in 2005. It was a case against a drug dealer, of course. Detective Del Rio told it like it was. No doubt, his investigatory work on the case, and his unbiased testimony about what he did and found, went a long way to holding that drug dealer accountable for the poison he was pumping into our community. Detective Del Rio has been serving our community with work like that ever since. Where do people like him come from? The ones who continue down the stairs? What a debt of gratitude we owe them.”Vipal Patel, First Assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio
DelRio was moved into surgery on Thursday to donate his organs. Biehl said Wednesday DelRio’s injuries were “tragically not survivable.”
Law enforcement officials held an honor walk at Grandview Medical Center, lining the halls alongside him as he was taken into surgery:
From there, DelRio was to be carried to the Coroner’s Office, passing the Dayton Police Department one final time.
Biehl asked the public to hold DelRio’s family, friends, colleagues and law enforcement officers in their thoughts, prayers and heartfelt care.
DelRio leaves behind a wife, five daughters, three granddaughters and another granddaughter on the way, Biehl said.
Funeral services for DelRio are expected to be held next week.
A written statement will be released later Thursday with statements from dignitaries lauding DelRio for his decades of “selfless service to the community, region and the nation,” Biehl said.
Blue ribbons now line the department’s safety building. A group including the local chapter of Police Wives of Ohio put them up Wednesday after the Chief’s somber announcement.
The Dayton Police Department Homicide Unit is investigating the shooting.
The Professional Standards Bureau is conducting an administrative investigation into the officers who responded, and the DEA is looking more into the drugs that were being trafficked at that house.