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Hundreds honor fallen law enforcement officials in Jefferson City

Hundreds of law enforcement officers and families of those fallen gathered outside the state capitol on Saturday for the 27th annual Missouri Law Enforcement Memorial Service.

Four officers that died in the line of duty were memorialized in the Wall of Honor overlooking the Missouri River. One of the officers, Vernon Winn, died in 1997 and served with the Iberia Police Department in Miller County.

Two of the officers from Chesterfield died just one month apart last year. Both Christopher Simpson and Joseph Smith died last year from a heart attack.

The fourth officer, Edward Bell, died during an ambush at the Missouri Pacific Railroad in 1919.

Attorney General Chris Koster spoke at the service, saying that police officers “stand between our families and the monsters of the world.”

The service also honored other fallen officers, including Columbia officer Mollie Bowden who was killed during a traffic stop in 2005. The Columbia Police Department laid a wreath for her at the memorial today.

Since 1836, 682 officers have died in the line of the duty in Missouri. Officials said the last year that no officers died was in 1910.

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