The community is mourning the loss of police officer and Arbuckle resident Natalie Corona, who was shot and killed on Thursday while on duty with the Davis Police Department.
Her killer, identified as a white male in his 20s, was found dead inside a Davis home a few hours later from what appears to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound, authorities said.
Corona was a 2014 graduate of Pierce High School, who always aspired to become a police officer. She started working for the Davis Police Department in 2016 in community services.
She graduated from the police academy this past July, and her proud father, Colusa County Supervisor Merced Corona, a retired sergeant with the Colusa County Sheriff’s Office, pinned her badge to her uniform on Aug. 2.
Davis Police Chief Darren Pyte said she was a rising star in his department.
“I’ve heard her described by our officers as our daughter and our friend, and just the sister that we all wanted,” Chief Pyte said. “This is just an absolutely devastating loss.”
Corona had just completed her field training a few weeks earlier and was on patrol Thursday when she responded to a triple car accident at 6:45 PM. Not long after arriving at the scene, Corona was shot. Despite valiant attempts by paramedics to save her, Corona succumbed to injuries at UC Davis hospital, Pyte said.
“Today, as we deal with the pain and anger we are feeling about the terrible loss of such a young, promising public servant, we should all focus on supporting Natalie’s family, her colleagues, and our whole community, including Arbuckle, where Natalie grew up, said Assemblywoman Cecilia Aguiar-Curry, whose district includes southern Colusa County.
Aguiar-Curry said her heart broke Thursday night upon hearing the news.
“We will, without a doubt, miss her dedication and passion for public safety,” she said. “Yet, I know that nothing we are feeling could possibly compare to the grief of her family at this time. I am grieving with the Davis community and with Natalie’s family. Our community is shaken, and we will struggle for a long time to process what happened.”
The Colusa County Sheriff’s Office has also issued condolences to Supervisor Corona and his family, and Gov. Gavin Newsom ordered flags in the capitol, in Sacramento, lowered to half-staff.
In a statement on behalf of him and his wife, Jennifer Siebel, Newsom said he was saddened to hear of Officer Corona’s death.
“We join all Californians in mourning the loss of this courageous officer and extend our deepest condolences to Officer Corona’s family, friends, and coworkers,” he said.
Loving tributes to Corona have also been posted on Facebook, among them Arbuckle Parks and Recreation officials, who acknowledged Corona as one of their own. Corona was a longtime ARPD employee and volunteer.
“She was extremely well loved by our community and will be deeply missed,” said Mary Grimmer.
Roger Long worked with Corona for many years with APRD, and said his heart was broken over the senseless tragedy.
She was a sweetheart, full of smiles and laughter and will be sorely missed. My prayers go out to her family and the Arbuckle community. RIP
A Candlelight Vigil honoring Corona will be held at 6 PM on Saturday in Central Park, in Davis.
A Memorial Fund has been established at the Umpqua Bank in Arbuckle to help the family with funeral expenses and to provide a scholarship in Natalie’s name.
Corona was the second California police officer gunned down in recent weeks in California. Cpl. Ronil Singh, 33, of the Newman Police Department, was shot to death Dec. 26 after he stopped a suspected drunk driver.