On Wednesday, June 22, 2022, at 11:29 a.m., Rialto Police Department officers responded to the 3300 block of North Riverside Avenue for a report of a single-vehicle traffic collision. The collision involved a mother and her two children, who struck a telephone pole and were in need of assistance. Two officers arrived on scene and coordinated with Rialto Fire Department Paramedics to render aid to the mother and her two children, as well as investigate the collision. At 12:08 p.m., two officers were seated in their marked patrol unit completing necessary paperwork, when their driver-side door was violently struck by another vehicle causing the airbags to deploy and both officers being trapped inside. Witnesses at the scene reported the driver of the vehicle, later identified as David Lawrence Cordova III, driving a black 2019 Nissan Sentra northbound on Riverside Avenue when he appeared to deliberately swerve toward the officers’ patrol vehicle. Witnesses further stated Cordova used his vehicle to ram the police officers’ vehicle, which was parked facing northbound on Riverside Avenue with its emergency lights activated.
Witnesses told investigators that following the collision, Cordova exited his vehicle and acted erratically. When additional officers arrived, Cordova was in the middle of the street, yelling incoherently and displaying signs and symptoms of being under the influence of narcotics. Cordova resisted officers when they attempted to take him into custody.
The officers who were assaulted by Cordova remained trapped inside their vehicle for several minutes before being freed. They were transported to a local hospital, where they received treatment for injuries sustained when Cordova rammed his vehicle into their patrol unit.
A responding officer also sustained minor injuries while attempting to arrest Cordova, and was subsequently transported to a local hospital for treatment of his injuries. All three officers were released from the hospital later that evening and are recovering at home. Cordova was transported to a local hospital for treatment of minor injuries he sustained during the collision.
Further investigation revealed the Nissan Sentra Cordova was driving had been taken from a female victim during a carjacking that occurred minutes earlier in the 500 block of Mt. Vernon Avenue in the city of San Bernardino. According to the San Bernardino Police Department, the victim, who suffered from a medical condition, was violently attacked by Cordova when he opened her car door as she was in the driver seat, with the vehicle running, parked in a stall of a medical clinic. Cordova struck the victim in her head several times with her own cane before pulling her out of the vehicle by her hair and driving away in her car.
Cordova was booked into the West Valley Detention Center for PC 664/187 – Attempted Murder and PC 69 Resisting an Executive Officer by Force. Cordova’s bail has been set for $1,000,000. The San Bernardino Police Department is investigating the carjacking and additional charges will be filed by their agency.
The Rialto Police Department requests anyone with information related to the investigation contact Traffic Sgt. Dan Smith at (909) 820-2515. Witnesses can also anonymously report information through WeTip at (800) 782-7463.
Rialto Police received grant funding from the California Office of Traffic Safety to step up motorcycle safety awareness with trainings led by law enforcement.