A seemingly innocuous conversation between a police officer and a driver was unfolding during a traffic stop in New Mexico earlier this year.
“Hey, hey, real quick, you got a firearm on you?” New Mexico State Police Officer Darian Jarrott calmly said after asking the man to get out of the car.
The man in the car confirmed he did.
The exchange was captured on dashcam video and posted online last week. The wind on the highway made the next few seconds hard to understand, but Jarrott asks the man if he can take the gun for his safety.
"Alright, let’s go to my vehicle. OK?” Jarrott said.
It would be some of his last words.
Last week, New Mexico police provided a detailed release about the traffic stop that ended with the officer and the suspect dead. Dashcam video was also released that showed the encounter and the officer’s final moments.
On Feb. 4, Jarrott stopped the truck on Interstate 10, according to New Mexico State Police. Jarrott spoke to Omar Felix Cueva and asked him to get out of the truck.
When Cueva did, he pulled out an AR-15 style gun from his side and opened fire at the officer.
“Oh s***,” Jarrott yelled as he ducked and fell to the ground.
Cueva ran to the front of the truck and shot the officer in the back of the head at point-blank range, according to state police. The suspect then ran back to his vehicle and left the scene.
Jarrott’s body laid along the side of the road.
A Homeland Security agent arrived on the scene and let New Mexico State Police know that an officer was down.
Police stopped Cueva a short distance away. Cueva pulled over and fired at the officers, before he again fled, according to state police.
Officers from several agencies gave chase and used stop sticks to deflate his tires, but Cueva continued to flee. Cueva shot at officers as they chased him. Police eventually stopped Cueva by ramming his truck.
Cueva got out of the car and moved towards the officers and shot at them. The exchange was caught on witness video and posted online. Police returned fire and killed Cueva.
One officer was hurt in the last gunfire exchange. The officer was taken to the hospital and later released, according to state police.
“We appreciate the public’s support during this difficult time,” Robert Thornton, Chief of the New Mexico State Police, said in a release detailing the incident. “We will honor Officer Jarrott’s sacrifice by continuing to serve and protect the citizens of New Mexico.”
WHO WAS OFFICER JARROTT
Jarrott graduated from Lordsburg High School in 2010, where he was an athlete and salutatorian of his class. He then attended Western New Mexico University.
“He loved his family and friends and is remembered as always having a smile,” his obituary read. “He also enjoyed hunting and video games.”
Jarrot joined the New Mexico Department of Public Safety as a Transportation Inspector, according to state police.
He became a certified police officer in December 2014 and worked with the Motor Transportation Division of the Department of Public Safety. He joined the New Mexico State Police in July 2015.
Jarrott is survived by three children and a wife. They were expecting their fourth child later this year.
A funeral was held for Jarrott days after his death.