On October 27, 1925, Patrol Inspector Ross A. Gardner was returning from his official station, San Diego, California, to Elsinore, California, where he was temporarily assigned. He was operating a government-owned motorcycle which he had taken to San Diego to be repaired. At Sedoc, California, about three miles east of Elsinore, Inspector Gardner ran into the rear of an automobile that was stalled on the roadway. The stalled vehicle had no lights at the time and, reportedly, headlights on a truck heading in the opposite direction hampered the officer's vision.
Patrol Inspector Gardner sustained a fractured skull, fracture of the pelvis, and internal injuries. He was conveyed to Elsinore by a passing motorist but was later transferred to the Naval Hospital in San Diego, California. Death occurred at 4:20 a.m. on October 28, 1925.