WASHINGTON - Funeral arrangements have been made along with a vigil for Terrence Sterling, the Fort Washington man shot to death early Sunday morning by D.C. police.
Sterling was riding his motorcycle when police say he tried to flee a traffic stop, they claim he rammed a police cruiser - an account contradicted by 2 witnesses at the scene.
FOX 5's Paul Wagner met with Sterling's employer and others who knew him, in an attempt to try and get a clearer picture of who he was.
Sterling loved his job and his job loved him back. He was an HVAC Technician who did most of his work at Vantage Point West of Leisure World, Maryland. His boss is Anthony Dixon---the owner of the company Sterling worked for.
“To hear the story that they put out was totally a shock to me because it is not Terrence’s character--I was sick in 2015 and he took over the business and if it wasn't for Terrence we wouldn't have a business right now because he stood in for me and he was more than an employee, he was a brother and a very good friend of mine,” Dixon told FOX 5.
Dixon says he's known Terrence Sterling since he was five and has employed him since he was 19, "if you were having a bad day and you would see that smile, cause he never got upset, he never got angry, all you would see is that smile, he would take it on the chin and I don't care what was going on he would take it on the chin and his smile was infectious".
He had the perfect personality for dealing with older residents who sometimes struggled with setting their thermostats. "He was very patient and kind with our residents, had great mannerisms and was always there for them, even if he wasn't servicing them in an aspect of his job title if someone needed something he was there for them, he treated all the residents like family," said Alisia Madariaga, the buildings Property Manager.
Dixon says Sterling was in D.C. Saturday night for a bachelor party and was likely heading for home when he encountered the police.
Although police say sterling tried to flee and rammed his bike into a cruiser---two witnesses saw it differently and say the collision was unavoidable as the police cruiser deliberately drove in front of the motorcycle at third and M NW.
One witness says there were no commands from the officers in the car and then they heard two shots.
Dixon has so far found it impossible to square the police version of the shooting with the man he has known for more than 25 years, 'I have had customers since this incident happened that once they hear the news they almost buckle and tears because they cannot believe that he is gone I mean he touched everybody's life that he came in counter with--he is going to be missed.”
A vigil will be help for Sterling on Friday night at 8 p.m. in the Fort Foote Elementary School Parking Lot, and funeral services will be held on Saturday.