Baltimore Officer Dies After Ambush in Her Patrol Car

Keona Holley's family made difficult decision to remove her from life support
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 17, 2021 2:36 AM CST
Updated Dec 29, 2021 12:00 AM CST
Baltimore Officer Ambushed, Shot as She Sat in Patrol Car
Baltimore Police cadets arrive to the neighborhood around Pennington Avenue following an overnight shooting of a Baltimore Police officer, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021.   (Jerry Jackson/The Baltimore Sun via AP)

Update: The Baltimore police officer ambushed in her patrol car Dec. 16 died last week, with her family making the difficult decision to remove life support a week after she was shot, ABC 17 reports. "Baltimore will never forget Officer Holley’s sacrifice and commitment to making a difference in her beloved city," said the city's mayor in a statement. Two suspects have been charged in her shooting, and police say they confessed to shooting her and then fatally shooting Justin Johnson in a residence nearby. They have also been charged with Johnson's murder. A motive has not been made public. Our original story from Dec. 17 follows:

Keona Holley joined the Baltimore Police Department two years ago because she wanted to make a difference and help improve relationships between residents and officers. On Wednesday night, she volunteered to work overtime. It was during that overnight shift she was ambushed and shot, CBS Baltimore reports. She was sitting in her patrol car near a park when at least one gunman ran up behind the vehicle and started shooting around 1:30am Thursday, the Baltimore Sun reports. Fellow officers found her after her patrol car accelerated, then crashed, following the shooting. She's now on life support.

"Keona was a hard-working mother," the city's mayor said Thursday. "And like hard-working mothers do—especially around this time of year—she volunteered to work overtime last night in an area where we have been experiencing violence because she is a a public servant." A vehicle suspected of being involved in the crime has been located and several people have been questioned by police, but no arrests have yet been made, and police are asking for anyone with information to come forward.

story continues below

The Baltimore police commissioner says the attack was "apparently very targeted" due to Holley being in a clearly marked patrol car, WBAL-TV reports. "We gotta do better in this city. Baltimore, we are killing ourselves. It should not be like this," said Holley's sister during a press conference. As for Holley, a 39-year-old former nursing assistant, her sister said, "She left out of her house every day and dug her feet into the dirt to serve this city. She deserves better." A reward of $118,000 is being offered for information leading to an arrest in the case. (More Baltimore stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.