Surveillance video captured the frantic and ultimately unsuccessful effort to help a Riverside County Sheriff’s deputy who was shot and killed in Jurupa Valley on Thursday.
Authorities say Isaiah Cordero, 32, was killed during a traffic stop by 44-year-old William Shae McKay, a San Bernardino County resident who authorities say had an “extensive criminal history” dating back to the 1990s.
Security camera video obtained by KTLA shows two women, who were working inside their home, rushing to their front yard after hearing a gunshot. One woman runs over to Cordero and calls police as other neighbors gather around in shock.
“It was scary,” said Cindy, who called police for help. “I felt hopeless at first as I didn’t know what to do. I just followed the dispatcher’s instructions. It was just a scary scene. It was something very difficult to live. I’ve never experienced anything like it. I just want the family to know that we tried our best to help.”
Cordero’s family visited the women on Friday to thank them for their persistence.
Cordero had been with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department since 2014. He recently graduated from the motor academy and was working with motor enforcement at the Jurupa Valley Station.
The shooting led to a massive manhunt that spanned both Riverside and San Bernardino counties. McKay was eventually located by officers and dozens of law enforcement vehicles that pursued his truck on the 15 Freeway. The high-speed chase came to an end in Norco just below a freeway overpass.
Authorities say McKay fired at deputies and was shot and killed by responding gunfire.
At a news conference Thursday night, Riverside County Sheriff Chad Bianco said Cordero would still be alive if a San Bernardino County judge had sentenced McKay to prison in 2021 instead of reducing his bail and allowing him to walk free.
“This terrible tragedy should’ve been prevented by the legal system,” said Bianco. “McKay has an extensive, violent past and was convicted of his third strike in November 2021. That case involved kidnapping and assault with a deadly weapon. Instead of sentencing him to 25 years to life, which should’ve happened, the judge lowered his bail, allowing him to be released.”
Community mourns Deputy Cordero
Loved ones and local residents are continuing to mourn Cordero’s death as a memorial grows outside of the Jurupa Valley Sheriff’s station.
“We’re suffering but trying to remember the great times we had with him,” said Deputy David Padilla, Cordero’s cousin who works for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. “It’s just really tough on us right now. He loved motorcycles. He was always lively, he brought the light to a dark room. He was just a loving cousin, motivator and just an all-around great person.”
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department released an update, saying:
“The last 24 hours have been difficult for our department and our hearts are heavy for Deputy Cordero’s loved ones. The outpouring of love and support we have received over the past day have been overwhelming. We cannot adequately express our gratitude to the allied agencies and our community members who have reached out in support. Your comments, prayers, condolences remind us why we serve and what makes our community great. We come together during tough times. From the bottom of our hearts, thank you.”