Trooper Joshua D. Miller
Pennsylvania State Police
End of Watch: Sunday, June 7, 2009
Tour of Duty: 6 years
Badge Number: 8819
Cause of Death: Gunfire
Date of Incident: Sunday, June 7, 2009
Weapon Used: Handgun; 9 mm
Suspect Info: Shot and killed
Trooper Joshua Miller was shot and killed while attempting to apprehend a kidnapping suspect.
At 7:45 pm members of the Nazareth Police Department responded to a report of a protection-from-abuse order violation involving a weapon. As they arrived, the suspect took a 9-year-old boy from his mother at gunpoint and fled the location in a vehicle, leading to a 40 mile vehicle pursuit.
The suspect's vehicle was stopped in Coolbaugh Township (Monroe County) when members of the Pennsylvania State Police utilized the PIT maneuver, to end the pursuit in a safe manner. Upon stopping the suspect’s vehicle, Trooper Miller and another Trooper, Robert LOMBARDO approached the car in an attempt to rescue the boy from the suspect. The suspect opened fire on the troopers striking Trooper Miller in the neck and leg, and striking his partner Trooper LOMBARDO in the arm. Both troopers were able to return fire, killing the suspect.
While Trooper Miller and Trooper LOMBARDO were engaged in the gun battle, with the suspect, Trooper John OSTERHOUT and Cpl. Frederick J. LAHOVSKI of the Tatamy Borough Police Department rescued the boy from the passenger seat of the suspect's vehicle and carried him to safety.
Trooper Miller was airlifted to the Lehigh Valley Medical Center where he died from his wounds. Trooper LOMBARD was transported, by ambulance to the Scranton CMC Hospital where he was treated for his injuries. Trooper LOMBARDO is expected to recover fully from his injuries.
Trooper Miller had served with the Pennsylvania State Police for six years and was assigned to the Swiftwater State Police Barracks, and had previously served with the United States Marine Corps. He is survived by his wife and three daughters.
On July 12, 2007 Trooper Miller, along with other members of the Pennsylvania State Police, assisted members of the New York City Police Department in the capture of two of the men who killed Police Officer Russell Timoshenko and wounded his partner on July 9, 2007 during a vehicle stop in Brooklyn, New York.