SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – An off-duty Stockton police officer was killed in by a hit-and-run driver while riding a motorcycle Saturday night.

Police say Officer Justin Kepler was riding his personal motorcycle in Escalon when he has struck by the vehicle.

Stockton Police Chief Jones released the following statement:

“Last night, we lost an incredible man and an incredible police officer who faithfully served the community members of Stockton. He placed his life on the line for our protection and was taken from us in a tragic hit and run accident while he was off-duty. My heart goes to his family, his friends, and also our entire department. I want to thank the first responders, the Escalon Police Department, and the California Highway Patrol for locating and arresting the hit and run suspect. Let us all remember Justin as a protector and server of our community.”

Officers say the driver of the vehicle was eventually caught and taken into custody.

Kepler was hired by the Stockton Police Department April 16, 2012.