Seattle, WA

Seattle Police Officer Killed While Helping at Accident

Dwight Benedict

Seattle police officer who had just completed her shift was killed early Sunday while attempting to help in a three-car crash on Interstate 5 just south of downtown Seattle.

According to Assistant Chief Tom Mahaffey, the death has crushed the officer's family and the entire Seattle Police Department. According to her father, Laird Harris, Alexandra Brenneman Harris, 38, also known as Lexi, was the officer. She had spent five years with SPD.

The Washington State Patrol is seeking a person involved in the crash, which then took Harris' private car, according to WSP Capt. Ron Mead. According to a WSP press release, the vehicle was discovered abandoned Sunday morning and retained as evidence.

"It really speaks to where we are as a culture, where we have such callousness when it comes to loss of life," Mead said during a press conference in Bellevue on Sunday.

According to her father, Harris, a Seattle native, was raised in Wallingford and went to Nova High School. She majored in Human Kinetics at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver and worked in the personal fitness sector for several years following graduation. She operated a 24 Hour Fitness in Las Vegas but spent most of her adult life in Seattle.

Friends recommended Harris to attend an SPD recruitment event around six years ago, and she loved the way the agency conducted police. Her initial patrol was in Queen Anne, and she later spent two years on downtown bike patrol, doing the nightly shift.
SPD Officer Alexandra HarrisLocal News

"She would stop on the street and chat to the homeless people," her father added, showing compassion to everyone.

Harris became active in the department's wellness section while at SPD, which focused on officers' physical and emotional wellbeing. She also created a side business and collaborated on creating a podcast called "The Leaderist," which is about "changing the connection between law enforcement and the communities they serve."

Laird described Lexi's death as "classic Lexi." "It was in her blood. I am sure her main concern was keeping people out of harm's way."

According to Mead, the driver who hit the officer remained at the scene and collaborates with WSP, which is handling the investigation. Anyone with information should contact 425-401-7742.

The three-car crash happened at 1:18 a.m. in the northbound I-5 HOV lane, following a 10- to a 13-car incident. That event occurred at 11:43 p.m. Saturday on I-5 south near Spokane Street. There were no casualties.

On Sunday, first responders and public figures around the region voiced their sorrow.

"Our hearts go out today to the family and friends of the officer who tragically died while attempting to assist others following a collision," Mayor Jenny Durkan tweeted. "The officer's commitment to our community extended beyond their shift, and we will never be able to thank this officer for putting the lives of others ahead of their own."

"This is terrible. "Our hearts and thoughts reach out to the officer's family and our SPD brothers and sisters," the Bellevue Police Department said on Twitter.

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Seattle, WA

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