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Wife of fallen officer upset his killer’s name was recited at rally

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BENJAMIN, Utah County — Widow Nannette Wride is upset.

"This is not a good man,” she said, “and they're saying his name? How dare they!"

Her husband, Utah County Sheriff's Sgt. Cory Wride, was shot and killed in the line of duty two years ago.

At a Utahns Against Police Brutality rally earlier this week, his killer's name was read among those memorialized as Utah victims of police brutality. The name "Jose Angel Garcia-Juaregui" was read in memoriam, followed by a chant from the crowd of "never forget."

Garcia-Juaregui shot and killed Wride in January 2014 when he stopped to check on a vehicle at the side of a road in Eagle Mountain. Garcia-Juaregui shot Wride while he was in his car. In a crime spree that ensued, Garcia-Juaregui was killed by police in a shootout.

“He ambushed my husband and murdered him, and then shot (deputy) Greg Sherwood and changed his life forever,” she said, adding that she was upset to learn what happened at the rally.

“I was disgusted,” Wride said. “I was shocked that anyone would even speak that name again. He did horrible things that day.”

She is sympathetic for family members of victims killed in unjustified shootings but said that was not the case with her husband's killer.

"I completely can empathize with someone who had an officer shoot and kill their loved one. They're in pain, they are grieving, I get that," she said.

Another name read at the rally was that of someone who shot and injured Salt Lake police officers Mo Tifisi and Dan Tueller. Christopher Leo Knight was shot and killed by police in March 2014 after he opened fire on them without warning.

"You have a duty to do your due diligence,” she said. “You need to find out the story behind each name before you even speak that, because how dare you!"

An event organizer declined an interview request Friday. Earlier in the week, she told KSL Newsradio that the woman who read the list of names is not a member of their group, and they were not familiar with all of the names on the list.

“We did not ask for her prepared speech. She was not part of Utah Against Police Brutality. This was a relative of Dillon Taylor who decided in her speech, which we did not ask her to provide us before, this is all them,” said Carly Haldeman, with Utahns Against Police Brutality. “I mean we probably had like 10 to 15 speakers and … we gave them a platform to speak. So I don’t think it’s right to criticize the organization in itself for a list she chose to read off.”

Taylor, 20, died in the parking lot of a 7-Eleven store at 2102 S. State in August 2014. Investigators say three Salt Lake officers were responding to reports of a man with a gun when the shooting occurred. The Salt Lake County District Attorney's Office ruled the shooting was legally justified.

Wride said by having those names read, it undermines the credibility of the Utahns Against Police Brutality movement.

"It's just horrible that they want to create hate and fear in people for absolutely no reason and put officers in danger," she said.

Haldeman said the group is not advocating no lethal force. “What we’re saying is it’s not always necessary, and it’s been abused too many times,” she said.

So far this year, there’s been a handful of officer-involved shooting in Utah, including the fatal shooting of Unified police officer Doug Barney, who was shot and killed in the line of duty on Jan. 17. Barney, 45, died after being shot once in the head while pursuing a man who police say had a "propensity for possession of weapons" and had walked away from the nearby crash scene.

He was the first officer killed in the line of duty nationwide in 2016, as well as the first officer killed in the Unified Police Department since its formation in 2010. Unified police officer Jon Richey was also injured. The gunman, Cory Lee Henderson, was killed when gunfire erupted between Henderson and police officers.

The number of officers shot and killed in the line of duty in the United States this year is already at a record pace. According to the Officer Down Memorial Page, last year 39 officers were killed in the line of duty; so far this year: 12.

“It’s unprecedented and it is not acceptable. … Those officers, every day of their lives have a bull's-eye on their chest because they wear that uniform,” Wride said. “For them to do that and then have the bad guys think that it's OK to shoot my officers — not cool."

Two years after her husband’s death in the line of duty, Wride works to provide emotional support to the spouses of fallen officers across the country through the foundation she started called the Blue Haven Foundation.

Email: jboal@deseretnews.com

Email: vvo-duc@deseretnews.com