LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) —  LA County Sheriff Alex Villanueva issued the following statement Wednesday evening after announcing the death of Deputy Joseph Gilbert Solano.

The deputy was shot in the back of the head Monday evening at a Jack in the Box in Alhambra in what appears to be a random, unprovoked act of violence.

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“The entire LASD Family has been shaken by the tragic news regarding the senseless and cowardly murder of Deputy Solano. With a heavy heart, and surrounded by Deputy Solano’s loved ones, I had to do the hardest thing I have ever had to do – announce the passing of one of my deputies.

Since the heinous act, I have spent a significant amount of time with Joseph’s family at the hospital, where medical professionals tirelessly worked around the clock to try to save his life. I was able to see firsthand the tremendous impact Deputy Solano had on his family, friends and partners throughout the department. I shared in their grief, and struggled with the realization that in the painful days ahead, no amount of comfort could ever fill the void left in our hearts.

Deputy Joe Solano in an undated photo (Photo via LASD)

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Deputy Solano was known as a kind-hearted and generous family man, a provider for his mother and an exemplary father to his children. We are a better department because of his selfless service. I take comfort knowing the department is compassionately tending to the needs of the Solano family.

Please join me in honoring Deputy Solano’s memory and keeping his family in our prayers. We appreciate the outpouring of support from everyone. Thank you.”

Janice Hahn, chair of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors, also issued a statement regarding the death of Deputy Solano.

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“It is such a tragedy that Deputy Solano has lost his life days after being senselessly shot while he was off-duty Monday night. He was a valued member of our LA County family and his loss will be deeply felt by all of us. My prayers are with his family and friends and everyone in the Sheriff’s Department who knew and loved him. I have asked that flags at all County buildings be flown at half-staff in his honor.”