An award-winning deputy sheriff was injured as he chased a fleeing suspect, authorities said, and will be unable to patrol the streets for some time.
Richard Gonzales, who joined the Madera County Sheriff’s Department in 2007, has won the agency’s Officer of the Year award three times, including as recently as last month.
Department spokesperson Erica Stuart said Gonzales was looking for a wanted fugitive at a house on Road 620 in Oakhurst on Saturday night when he heard a crash inside a building on the property.
“Gonzales heard a crash from inside one of the outbuildings and heard someone running into the brush, obviously evading arrest,” Stuart said. “During the pursuit, Gonzales slipped on a boulder and fell down the hillside into a creek bed several feet below the property.” ...