Bakersfield Highway Patrol Officer Dies Due to Covid-19

Bakersfield Highway Patrol Officer Dies Due to Covid-19

UPDATE 9/16: The California Highway Patrol has announced a public memorial service for Officer Scott Merritt. A memorial service will be held on Friday, September 17, 2021, at 11am at Valley Baptist Church, 4800 Fruitvale Avenue, doors open at 10am, and will be open to the public.  A private graveside service will follow.  Local COVID-19 protocols will be adhered to.

CHP also released a statement:

Officer Merritt, 42, a nearly 16-year veteran of the Department was assigned to the Bakersfield CHP Area and worked in the Santa Cruz Area after his graduation from the CHP Academy.  Officer Merritt’s bold and faithful service was rooted in a deep loyalty to the community he served.  Officer Merritt will be missed by all who had the honor of knowing him.

A memorial fund has been set up here.

The service will also be livestreamed on the CHP’s home page here.


Governor Gavin Newsom released a statement Friday evening following the death of California Highway Patrol Officer Scott Merritt.

The statement can be seen in full below:

“It is with great sadness that Jennifer and I send our condolences to Officer Merritt’s family, friends and those who served with him. Officer Merritt dedicated nearly 16 years of his life to serving the people of California, and he will forever be remembered.”

On Friday, September 10, Officer Merritt passed away due to complications related to COVID-19.

Officer Merritt, 42, served Kern County over the past 11 years as a member of the CHP’s Bakersfield Area Office. He transferred to Bakersfield in February 2010 from the CHP’s Santa Cruz Area Office, where he was assigned in May 2006 following his graduation from the CHP Academy.

He is survived by his wife, Shanon; children, Madison and Nolan; parents, Randall and Pattie Merritt; and brother, Cody.

In honor of Officer Merritt, Capitol flags will be flown at half-staff.

Locally, Bakersfield CHP has not released a statement nor have they said if a public memorial is planned.