Residents line streets for funeral for fallen Henry County police officer

MCDONOUGH, Ga. — Hundreds lined the streets of McDonough and the halls of the Henry County Performing Arts Center early Sunday morning to pay their final respects to fallen Henry County police officer Paramhans Desai.

A procession carrying Officer Desai’s body wound through city streets and ended at the Arts Center as people gathered honor the man who was just doing his job this week trying to diffuse a domestic situation.

Funeral services begin at 11 a.m. at the Arts Center.

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Desai was shot Nov. 4 after responding to a domestic call at a home near McDonough. That was where police said 22-year-old Jordan Jackson shot the officer and then fled, leading to a statewide manhunt. Desai passed away from his injuries on Nov. 8.

Jackson was found dead in a Riverdale apartment on Nov. 10. Police said Jackson killed himself after a standoff with officers and that he had been hiding there with the help of friends.

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Officer Desai was a veteran police officer who had previously worked for the Georgia Department of Corrections and the DeKalb County police department before joining the police force in Henry County. Desai leaves behind a wife and two sons. His patrol vehicle sits outside the Henry County Police headquarters covered in flowers and remembrances from friends, family and local residents.

Complete strangers came out to pay their respects to him Sunday.

“I didn’t know the officer and never had the chance to thank him, so this is our chance to let his wife and family know we honor him,” Tim Lewis said.

Martha Ortiz said Desai responded to a call she made a weeks ago. She said he truly touched their lives that day.

“He came and helped us on Nov. 2,” Ortiz said. “He was very nice and compassionate.”

Desai leaves behind a wife, two young children and his loving sister, who spoke at Sunday’s service.

“Giving up his life to save the life of another was his purpose and his purpose was and is to serve,” his sister said. “May he always watch and protect this department and all other departments.”

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