LAPD officer killed in crash to be laid to rest Thursday

The longtime Los Angeles police officer killed last week in a Beverly Hills crash will be laid to rest Thursday following a public funeral service at a downtown cathedral. 

The funeral for Officer Nicholas Lee, a nearly 16-year department veteran, will begin at 9 a.m. at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels, the LAPD said. The service is open to the public, however officials warned seating inside would be very limited.

California Gov. Jerry Brown is scheduled to attend the service, his office announced Wednesday.

PHOTOS: Fatal collision in Beverly Hills

A procession will follow the funeral, ending at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, where Lee will be interred. 

Police officials said a few downtown streets would be closed beginning at 6:30 a.m. Thursday: Hill Street between Ord and 1st streets, Temple Street between Grand Avenue and Broadway, and the northbound side of Grand between 1st and Temple.

Lee died Friday after a dump truck collided with his patrol car in Beverly Hills while he was en route to an "unknown trouble" call in L.A., police said. His partner, a rookie cop three months out of the academy, was released from the hospital Saturday night.

The truck driver was hospitalized but was expected to survive, police said.

The California Highway Patrol's investigation into the crash at Robert Lane and Loma Vista Drive is ongoing. The cause remains unclear, although authorities are focusing on a mechanical failure with the truck, possibly involving its brakes.

The police cruiser was so mangled rescuers had to peel off the top of the vehicle to free the officers. Lee died at the scene.

The 40-year-old was a married father of two daughters, the LAPD said. He had worked in the Van Nuys, Wilshire and Hollywood divisions, receiving more than 70 commendations. He was recently featured in a video the department created for a 7-year-old Rhode Island boy with leukemia.

Tuesday's Police Commission meeting began with a moment of silence in Lee's honor, followed by a showing of the video.

"We mourn all of our losses," LAPD Chief Charlie Beck told the commissioners. "And the most recent hurts the most."

The Los Angeles Police Federal Credit Union has opened an account in Lee's memory.


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