Desmond Tome, Navajo Indian Nation spokesman, on behalf of Acting Chief of Police Bobby Etsitty of the Navajo Tribal Police Department of Public Safety that Officer Ernest Montoya died while on duty Sunday.

Officer Montoya, 54, suffered a fatal heart attack while he was transporting a prisoner to the reservation’s jail facility in Dilkon, Arizona.

Officer Montoya was dispatched to a disturbance call and had to struggle with the male suspect to place him under arrest. After placing the arrested man in his patrol vehicle, he began driving to the reservation jail. While he was driving, Officer Montoya suffered a massive heart attack.

The vehicle he was driving crashed into a highway embankment and rolled over. The male suspect was not injured in the crash.

Officer Montoya served the Navajo Division of Public Safety for 20 years.

Officer Ernest Montoya-gone, but never forgotten. EOW: Sunday, November 30, 2014.

“Graphic created by Fellow Officer Rose Borisow GraFX”

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