Wendel on the Web is WKYC reporter/producer Kim Wendel's "take" and commentary on the news of the day

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Sunday just after 2 a.m. was the sixth anniversary of the killing of Twinsburg police officer Josh Miktarian by Ashford Thompson during a traffic stop on Glenwood Drive.

With Miktarian's K-9 Bagio frantically barking in the locked cruiser, Thompson, then 23, shot Miktarian four times in the head after Miktarian managed to get one handcuff on Thompson's wrist.

Miktarian, 33, was two minutes into a traffic stop for loud music when he called for back-up. Moments later, a 9-1-1 caller reported shots fired.

Miktarian was pronounced dead at MetroHealth Medical Center at 2:48 a.m., seven minutes after police caught up with Thompson at his sister's Bedford Heights home, the one handcuff still dangling from his wrist.

Miktarian was the first officer killed in the line of duty in the Twinsburg Police Department's 56-year history.

Thompson was convicted and the death sentence was handed down by Summit County Court of Common Pleas Judge Elinore Marsh Stormer June 23, 2010, and Thompson has been incarcerated since June 25, 2010.

Thompson appealed his conviction before the Ohio Supreme Court on April 8 this year. He remains on death row at the Chillicothe Correctional Institution.

Miktarian, who grew up in Tallmadge, was married to Oakwood Police Officer Holly Miktarian and they had a 3-month-old daughter Thea.

I was listening to my police scanner at home that night and heard the Solon officers also respond to his call. It was chilling. I had trouble sleeping last night thinking about it.

Sadly, a Jersey City police officer was killed just after 4 a.m. today after he responded to a report of an armed robbery at a Walgreens store.

The officer, Melvin Santiago, 23, was shot in the head after he was confronted outside the store by the gunman, who had waited for the police to arrive, the city's mayor, Steven M. Fulop, said.

The gunman, who was identified as Lawrence Campbell, 27, told a witness outside the store to watch the news later because he was going to be famous, Fulop said at a news conference Sunday morning.

The gunman shot Santiago at close range as the officer opened the door to a marked police car to leave the vehicle, and he then fired three more times at the windshield of a second police car.

Campbell, who was a suspect in another Jersey City homicide, was shot and killed by officers at the scene who returned fire, Fulop said.

Santiago, who had been on the force only since December, was pronounced dead a short time later at Jersey City Medical Center.

Follow WKYC's Kim Wendel on Twitter @KimWendel

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