Richmond police officer injured at sideshow used to be NFL player

Richmond police officer struck by car while breaking up sideshow
Photos: Richmond Police Department

The police officer who was injured by a vehicle while trying to break up a sideshow in Richmond last weekend has been identified as Onome Ojo, 40, a former NFL player, police said.

Ojo, 40, is recovering after being struck by a car about 1:20 a.m. Sunday at Marina Bay Parkway near Regatta Boulevard. The incident occurred after Ojo and fellow officers responded to the area on reports of a sideshow and found 40 to 50 cars doing “donuts” in the roadway, Richmond police Lt. Felix Tan said.

Two 18-year-olds have been charged in connection with the collision: Juan Vargas, who was identified as the driver, and Genesis Diaz-Castaneda.

Ojo, an 8-year RPD veteran, suffered serious injuries when the vehicle Vargas was driving struck him, Tan said. He has since been released from the hospital and is recovering, Tan said.

In 2001, Ojo, a former UC Davis wide receiver, was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the fifth round, but his career was cut short by injuries, according to a 2014 article in the Vallejo Times-Herald.

Prosecutors have filed charges against Vargas including attempted murder of a police officer, assaulting an officer, hit-and-run resulting in injury, conspiracy and false report of a criminal offense, a Contra Costa County prosecutor told Bay City News. Diaz-Castaneda has also been charged with being an accessory after the fact, conspiracy and false report of a criminal offense.


  1. Glad that Officer Ojo is recovering, he could have been killed that night. Funny how you never hear anything from the extreme leftists whenever our officers are hurt risking their lives for the publics safety. Not a word. Their sympathies seem to always lie with the criminal rather than the victims or representatives of the law.