By Hannah Smoot, Evan Moore, Joe Marusak
Source The Charlotte Observer
A somber day for the city of Charlotte was unfolding Wednesday morning, with the start of a procession to an uptown church for the funeral of Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer Mia Goodwin.
Hundreds of CMPD officers and staff were in the procession Wednesday and a U.S. flag flew at half-staff on Charlotte Fire Department Ladder 27 on South Davidson Street outside the church entrance.
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The procession arrived at First Baptist Church in Charlotte just before 10 a.m., led by dozens of CMPD motorcycle officers. Police officers from around the state had also gathered to honor Goodwin.
Goodwin, 33, was killed in a wreck involving two semi-trucks on Interstate 85 on Dec. 22. Three other officers were injured. Goodwin had just returned from maternity leave, and had been working an accident scene on the interstate.
The procession starts at 9 a.m. and will take Goodwin from Alexander Funeral Home to First Baptist Church at 301. S. Davidson St. Road closures for the route were set to start at 8:45 a.m.
Visitation at the church is from 10 a.m. to noon, with the funeral services starting at 12 p.m. They are open to the public, and also will be streamed online.
Burial will be private, according to CMPD.
Goodwin was married to Charlotte firefighter Brenton Goodwin. Their children are ages 3, 1 and 4 months.
Goodwin is believed to be the first CMPD officer killed while stationed at a traffic accident scene since the 1980s, police Chief Johnny Jennings said last week.
A number of tributes to Goodwin have appeared around the city, including a police cruiser at the University City precinct with an American flag and flowers, a CATS bus message board reading “RIP Officer Goodwin” and a billboard in the city with Goodwin’s picture and the message “Thoughts & prayers to the family of Officer Mia Goodwin. Rest Peacefully.”
Charges in the case
Goodwin, who worked in the University City Division in north Charlotte, joined CMPD in October 2015.
At 3:39 a.m. on Dec. 22., two semi-trucks collided with each other on I-85 South in northeast Charlotte, authorities said. The collision sent both trucks into CMPD vehicles that were assisting State Highway Patrol with traffic for an earlier wreck near W.T. Harris Boulevard.
One of the truck drivers involved in the wreck, 50-year-old Leon Morgan of High Point has since been charged with involuntary manslaughter.
Morgan has also been charged with misdemeanor death by vehicle, failure to reduce speed and felony failure to move over for stopped emergency vehicles. And Morgan was cited for knowingly displaying a fictitious registration plate.
The local chapter of the Fraternal Order of Police is accepting donations for her family, and two GoFundMe pages also have been set up for them. The GoFundMe pages show that over $300,000 has been raised for the family so far.
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