Police Officer Adrian Morris' funeral services
Updated: August 28, 2012 - 05:26 pm
Led by an advance guard of motor units from across the region, the flag-draped casket of Prince George's County Police Officer Adrian Morris was carried through the community he served Tuesday, as hundreds of his fellow officers stood at attention to say goodbye.
Morris was killed in the line of duty Monday, Aug. 20 while in pursuit of two car theft suspects. The cruiser he was driving ran off I-95 near Beltsville and into a ditch while traveling at a high rate of speed.
The Prince George's county fire department raised a massive U.S flag in front of the Woodstream Church in Mitchellville as hundreds of police officers from around the region filed in.
From CIA police to law enforcement on the Eastern Shore, many came to say goodbye to Morris. His casket slowly entered the church today, draped in red white and blue, with his grieving family a few steps behind.
With his mother, sister and little brother in the front row, Morris was remembered as a diminutive man with a big heart. A Jamaican immigrant, Morris moved several times before finding a home in Prince George's County.
By the time he was 16, he was signed up to be a police explorer in Beltsville. That's when Officer Kenneth Hibbert became his mentor.
"Adrian Morris was more than a police officer to me," Hibbert said through tears. "He was more than an explorer - he was my little brother."
The service, with full police honors included scripture, poems, songs by the police choir and reflection on the man nicknamed baby Hercules, small in stature with enormous heart and dedication.
County Executive Rushern Baker says the community owes Morris a debt of gratitude.
"Adrian had a purpose in live, and I believe that purpose will continue to shine in each of us he touched," Baker said.
Police say Morris and his partner were chasing Kevon Darnell Neal, 23, and Kenneth Mitchell, 24, when their patrol car ran off southbound I-95 and into a ditch.
Neal of Fort Washington was the alleged driver of the stolen car. Mitchell of the District was allegedly the passenger. Both are in police custody.
Neal had his bond raised from $75, 000 to no bond, according to the Prince George's State's Attorney.
Morris, who officials say was not wearing a seatbelt, was ejected from the car. His partner, Mike Risher, suffered multiple but non-life threatening injuries.
Morris, a two and a half year veteran of the force, spent time at the 6th District in Prince George's County since he was "15 or 16 years old." The 2007 graduate of Eleanor Roosevelt High School participated in the department's Police Explorer Program.
Prince George's County Police Chief Mark Magaw said the officers followed protocol during the incident and that he's "very proud" of their work.
"It shows the courage and dedication of these officers," Magaw said.
Morris, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, was raised in Laurel, becoming a U.S. citizen in 2009.
After becoming a police officer, Morris continued to work with the Police Explorer Program as an advisor and mentor, the department says.
"Police Officer Morris represented the very best that our agency has to offer," said Magaw. "He wanted to be a Prince George's County police officer from a very young age, and it showed in all of his interactions with the community."
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