September 14, 2015

Joseph Ponder - Kentucky State Trooper Fatality

Trooper Joseph Ponder, age 31, died in the line of duty on September 13, 2015, at a hospital in Princeton, Kentucky. 

Trooper Joseph Ponder (L); Joseph Johnson-Shanks (R)
Trooper Ponder was a member of the Kentucky State Police. He was assigned to the Mayfield Station. He had less than one year of service.

Just before 10:30 p.m., Joseph Ponder tried to conduct a traffic stop on an interstate highway near Eddyville.

Michael, Patron Saint of the
Police, pray for Joseph Ponder
and for those who have lost
The driver of the vehicle fled the scene. Joseph began a chase that reached speeds of over 100 mph. The driver of the fleeing vehicle abruptly stopped causing Joseph to crash into the stopped vehicle. 

The driver then opened fire on Trooper Ponder, fatally wounding him. 

The driver then fled the scene on foot. 

Joseph Ponder was rushed to a nearby hospital where tragically he succumbed to his wounds.

The shooter, Joseph Johnson-Shanks, age 25, of St. Louis, Missouri, was apprehended by State Police on September 14, 2015.  He refused to drop his weapon and was shot.  He died of his injuries in hospital. 

Trooper Joseph Ponder was originally from Rineyville, Kentucky.  He had previously served with the United States Navy as a diver. During his years of military service he was awarded the Combat Action Ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, Navy Expeditionary Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Expert Rifle Marksmanship Ribbon and Expert Pistol Marksmanship Ribbon.

He graduated from the State Police Academy in January of 2015.

The Kentucky State Police are in mourning over the death of their brother. Joseph was proud to be a Trooper and loved his job. He will be forever remembered.

Joseph's loved ones are devastated over his sudden and tragic death. They describe him as the best man in the world who did not deserve what happened to him. He will be forever mourned.

Joseph is survived by many loving comrades, friends and family members who will forever miss him.

Thank you for your service to America and to Kentucky, Joseph. 

Pray for all who die suddenly. They are with us one moment and are gone before we can say goodbye.

God save us from the psychopaths. They are killing us, Father. Amen.

Pray that Joseph is in heaven. Pray that he is at peace and is with God. Amen.

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