KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Twenty-five years to the day Kansas City Police Sergeant Jim Leach was killed, his family gathered to raise money for another police officer recovering from his injuries. The fundraiser was held at Kelly's Westport Inn on Tuesday night.
Sgt. Leach was working near the bar the night of May 2nd, 1992 when a car came barreling through the barricade.
“He didn’t have a chance to defend himself,” his sister Patty Robinson said.
The 38-year-old was killed along with 21-year-old pedestrian David Biggers.
“It brings back the night that it happened, the call that you get, the rushing to the hospital and being told he was killed,” Bigger's mom Joyce said.
May 2nd has always been tough for the Leach family, he was killed on his mother’s 60th birthday. She turned 85 on Tuesday.
“It’s been 25 years, it’s nice to know that the department hasn’t forgotten, the community hasn’t forgotten," Robinson said.
Jackson County Sheriff's Office Colonel Ben Kenney, Leach's roommate at the time of his death, hopes the same support continues for Independence Police Office Tom Wagstaff. He's lucky to have survived and now at a long-term rehab facility in Nebraska.
“Officer Wagstaff is recovering well he is responsive he is communicating and it’s just some very positive things to hear and we just want community to keep them in their hearts and minds and remember we have one of our own that’s needs their love and prayers.”
Joe Allen Smith, convicted in Leach's and Biggers' deaths is now serving two life sentences.