LUBBOCK COUNTY, TX (KCBD) - It has been nine years since the death of Corporal D. Robert Harvey. He was killed in the line of duty on April 26, 2009. He was involved in a fiery crash just after midnight and was trapped inside of his patrol car.
The horrific collision happened at MLK and 88th.
Corporal D. Robert Harvey was out on patrol early that morning in Lubbock County when he was dispatched to a fight. "We had a major accident involving a Lubbock County sheriff's deputy and another vehicle at 12:20 a.m.," said Cpl John Gonzalez with the Texas Department of Public Safety during an interview the next day. The accident took Deputy Harvey's life. He was pronounced dead at the scene at 12:23 a.m.
DPS says that Deputy Harvey was traveling north on MLK and as he approached the intersection of 88th and MLK, a 2003 Ford pickup truck, heading south, attempted to make a left turn and collided with Deputy Harvey's vehicle. The head-on collision caused Harvey's Dodge Charger to burst into flames, trapping him inside.
The Lubbock County sheriff's office says the 29-year-old dedicated seven and a half stellar years to the sheriff's office as a member of the SWAT team and the patrol division.
A Lubbock jury delivered a verdict of Not Guilty in the 2011 DWI trial of Justin McKinney. McKinney was originally charged in the death of Corporal Harvey, but instead faced a reduced charge of Driving While Intoxicated.
DNA evidence proved he was driving the Ford pickup truck involved in the crash. Both he and Justin Walkup were ejected from the pickup truck the night of the crash. There were questions as to who was actually driving the pickup that night.
Corporal Harvey was given the Star of Texas award in 2013. The original Star of Texas Awards statute, created in 2003, limited the awards to a single individual in each service category of peace officers, firefighters, and emergency medical first responders. During the 79th Regular Legislative Session in 2005, the Texas Legislature passed and Governor Perry signed into law House Bill 1977, which amended the Star of Texas Awards statute to require awards for each peace officer, firefighter, and emergency medical first responder who is seriously injured or killed in the line of duty on or after September 1, 2003.