An officer with Southern California’s Whittier Police Department was killed in a weekend motorcycle crash while off duty, authorities said.

Lanell Whitfield died in the crash Saturday afternoon in the city of Lynwood, south of downtown Los Angeles, the department said in a statement.

“Officer Whitfield was a beloved partner and friend, and a dedicated protector of the community,” the statement said.

Whitfield, who was in his 20s, became a Whittier police officer last October after working for the LA County Sheriff’s Department, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday. He is survived by his parents, police said.

The sheriff’s department is investigating the crash, the Times said.