Vallejo Officer Jim Capoot
Vallejo Officer Jim Capoot, 1993 photo
VALLEJO, CA - A Vallejo police officer has died after being shot during a foot chase with an individual being pursued in connection with a bank robbery.
Authorities confirmed the name of the officer as Jim Capoot of Vacaville. He was 45.
Vallejo Police Department Sgt. Jeffrey Bassett said the officer was responding to a bank robbery reported at 1:36 p.m. at the Bank of America branch on Springs Road.
Officer Trent Cross with the California Highway Patrol says the police officer spotted an SUV matching the description of one associated with robbery and pursued it on Interstate 80 and into a neighborhood north of the Solano County Fairgrounds. Capoot deployed a PIT maneuver on the vehicle on the 100 block of Janice Street which caused it to spin out and crash.
According to Bassett, at least one person in the SUV fled and the officer continued the chase on foot.
There was a confrontation and two or three shots were heard, according to witnesses.
Bassett said Capoot was found shot in the backyard of a home. He had not fired his service weapon.
One individual has been arrested; his name has not been released.
Bassett said there may still be one other person involved. An intense search has been scaled back.
PHOTOS: Search for suspect in Vallejo police officer shooting
The Vallejo Times-Herald reports the bank robbers were described as black men wearing Halloween masks.
READ MORE: Vallejo Times-Herald
Officer Jim Capoot
After joining the Marines at age 17 in 1986, then joining the California Highway Patrol in 1990, Officer Jim Capoot joined the Vallejo Police Department in 1992, according to the Vallejo Police Officers Association newsletter.
During his 19-year career with Vallejo police, Capoot received two Medals of Courage, two Life-Saving Medals and various other departmental recommendations. Capoot also saved the lives of two people by administering CPR, said the VPOA.
Over the past 10 years, Capoot supervised the Vallejo Junior Safety Patrol program, teaching children to act as crossing guards throughout the city. He helped train over 500 children.
Thursday night, neighbor Tony Fiero said Capoot's death was a big loss for the community.
"I still have chills up and down right now," Fiero said. "It's pretty hard just knowing he loved kids. It's pretty hard to take."
According to Fiero, Capoot welcomed two kids into his home and family after a motorcycle accident killed his best friend in 2010.
Fiero said Capoot was a dedicated family man.
"I see him come by here all the time - him, and his kids alongside him. He's a real good guy, a real good guy," Fiero said.
READ MORE: VPOA - Officer Spotlight: Jim Capoot
Capoot is survived by his wife Jennifer and three daughters.