Ceresco Police Officer died in the Line of Duty

Ceresco Police Officer died in the Line of Duty
Ceresco Police Officer Ross Bartlett
April 13th, 2024 | Courtesy

Gov. Jim Pillen has ordered flags be flown at half-mast until 5:00pm on the day of Officer Ross Bartlett’s burial.

View video of Nebraska State Patrol press conference here.

APRIL 13, 2024 (LINCOLN, NEB.)  — The Nebraska State Patrol is heartbroken to announce the passing of Ceresco Police Officer Ross Bartlett. Bartlett also served as an investigator for the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services. Officer Bartlett died Friday evening after his patrol until was struck by another vehicle while he was performing a traffic stop.

At approximately 7:37 p.m. Friday, a 911 call came in regarding a multi-vehicle crash that had just occurred near the intersection of Highway 77 and Little Salt Road, about one mile south of Ceresco on Highway 77. Responding agencies began arriving within four minutes and found bystanders assisting Officer Bartlett and the others involved in the crash.

Officer Bartlett, 54, was life-flighted to Bryan Health West Campus by Star Care. Despite the efforts of many bystanders, first responders, and medical personnel, Officer Bartlett succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced deceased Friday evening at the hospital.

Preliminary investigation shows that the crash occurred when Officer Bartlett was conducting a traffic stop on southbound Highway 77. Officer Bartlett’s patrol vehicle and a Nissan Altima were parked on the shoulder of Highway 77. While both Officer Bartlett and the driver of the Nissan were seated in their own vehicles, a southbound Ford F-150 struck the Ceresco PD cruiser from the rear, causing it to hit the Nissan.

The driver of the Nissan, Ke’vion Hill, 27, of Lincoln, suffered serious, but non-life-threatening injuries. He was transported to Bryan Health West Campus. The driver of the Ford, Tony Pierce, 49, of Crete, was not seriously injured.

The Nebraska State Patrol is conducting a full crash reconstruction investigation. Once complete, the findings will be presented to the Lancaster County Attorney’s Office.

Officer Bartlett has served with NDCS and Ceresco PD since 2017. He also served as a volunteer firefighter for Ceresco. Prior to those assignments, he served with the Boone County Sheriff’s Office, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, Madison Police Department, and Newman Grove Police Department. Funeral services are pending.

Governor Jim Pillen:

“This is a terrible loss for those who worked with Officer Bartlett through NDCS and those in the community who knew him through his law enforcement work. He was a dedicated public servant who answered the noble call to serve in various communities throughout his 30-year career,” said Gov. Pillen. “I am ordering that all flags be flown at half-staff starting immediately until 5 p.m. on the day of Officer Bartlett’s burial.”

U.S. Senator Deb Fischer

“Bruce and I are heartbroken to learn of the passing of Ceresco Police Officer Ross Bartlett. We send our deepest condolences to Officer Bartlett’s family and friends and to the entire Ceresco community in the wake of this tragedy. It takes profound courage and selflessness to serve as a law enforcement officer, and we are forever grateful for your service.”

Congressman Mike Flood:

“Ross’ service in law enforcement took him to multiple communities in our state, including Madison, where I personally worked with him and respected him. In addition to his career as a peace officer, he loved being a volunteer fireman and had a great sense of humor. Mandi and I are keeping the Bartlett family and law enforcement community in our thoughts and prayers as we grieve his passing and this devastating loss.”

U.S. Senator Pete Ricketts:

“Susanne and I were devastated to learn of the tragic passing of Officer Ross Bartlett. Our deepest condolences go to Officer Bartlett’s family and friends, and the entire Ceresco community. We will never forget his service and sacrifice, and we reaffirm our gratitude to the men and women who risk their lives each day to keep our communities safe.”


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