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MODESTO — Officials have identified the Modesto police sergeant killed after being hit by a suspected drunk driver as 38-year-old Michael Pershall.

Sergeant Mike Pershall, 38

Pershall was off-duty when he was riding his bike along Merle Avenue, near Daniel J. Savage Middle School, when he was fatally struck from behind by a car Tuesday evening.

Matthew Gibbs

The driver has been identified as 32-year-old Matthew Gibbs. CHP arrested Gibbs for homicide and several DUI related charges.

Pershall was a nine-year veteran in law enforcement. He was hired by the Modesto Police Department in 2012 after serving four years in in Tuolumne County as a sheriff’s deputy.

“Mike’s loss creates a tremendous void within our organization and within the hearts of those he touched” said Modesto Chief Galen Carroll. “We are forever grateful for the moments we shared with him”.

A vigil is being held in honor of Pershall  at 7:15 p.m. Thursday at Bel Passi sports complex.