Dublin Police Services has paid tribute this holiday season to an Alameda County Sheriff's Office deputy who while responding to a robbery in progress in Dublin 21 years ago.
A Christmas tree and wreath in the lobby of department headquarters, both adorned in blue, during December served as a memorial to Deputy John Paul Monego, who was the first law enforcement officer slain in the line of duty in the city's history.
"Twenty-one years ago today, Dublin Police Deputy John Paul Monego was killed mercilessly in the line of duty. Let us never forget the ultimate sacrifice that he made, and the young family he left behind, while serving our community," DPS said in a post on Twitter on Dec. 12, the anniversary of Monego's death.
Monego, a 13-year sheriff's office deputy assigned to DPS, responded to a 9-1-1 hangup at the Outback Steakhouse on Regional Street near Interstate 580 late at night on Dec. 11, 1998 -- but unbeknownst to Monego, the hangup call had actually come during a strong-arm robbery with hostages in progress.
Monego was the second deputy to arrive on scene; the first deputy had gone inside the restaurant to investigate but she was overpowered by three robbers, who then took her gun, according to the "Officer Down Memorial Page," which honors law enforcement personnel killed on duty nationwide and retells their stories.
As Monego approached the front door, an armed robber opened fire through a glass window, striking the deputy in the chest just above his protective vest. As Monego fell, the shooter walked outside and shot the deputy five more times at close range.
The robbers all fled the scene. Monego was transported to a local hospital but was pronounced dead shortly after midnight on Dec. 12, 1998.
The culprits were later arrested after a short pursuit. Each would be convicted of various counts at trial.
Monego was 33 years old and lived in Brentwood with his wife Tammy and 18-month-old son Dominic at the time of his death, according to city officials. The longtime deputy had been assigned to DPS -- as part of the city's police contract with the sheriff's office -- for just under a year when he was killed, the San Francisco Chronicle reported at the time.