A 70-year-old, off-duty sheriff's deputy braked to avoid two dogs and was rear-ended by a driver, who then got out and delivered fatal punch on New Year’s Eve. The driver identified as Alonzo Leron Smith was charged with murder, police said Wednesday.

San Bernardino County Sheriff's Deputy Lawrence Falce was taken off life support two days later following the attack and he succumbed to his injuries.

In a footage captured by a surveillance camera, obtained by the CW affiliate KTLA, setup by a nearby store in front of which the incident took place, Smith and Falce were seen briefly talking to one another on New Year's Eve before Smith appears to punch the veteran law enforcement official in the head, sending him falling to the ground where his skull then collides with the pavement.

“We believe that he was knocked unconscious almost immediately and he never did regain consciousness,” San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan said at a news conference.

After the attack, the assailant attempted to flee when a witness tried to stop him.

"He jumped in his car and tried to leave, so I rammed him once and then I backed up and he was able to go around my actual truck," the unidentified witness told KTLA, "so I rammed him a second time in the back of his car and spun him out across the street and into a … tree."

Regardless of the witness trying to stop him, Smith still managed to escape, leaving the witness to take care of Falce while they waited for paramedics to arrive to the scene.

Falce's attacker was eventually arrested 12 hours later and charged with murder on Wednesday while the sheriff's deputy, who was on the force for 36 years and was an Army veteran, succumbed to his injuries Tuesday evening after getting placed on life support.

"This person needs to spend the rest of his life in prison," San Bernardino County District Attorney Michael Ramos told the Los Angeles Times. "We need to get this career criminal off the streets who's been in prisons and jails ever since he was able to be tried as an adult."

Smith has been in prison for selling marijuana and gang activity, according to Ramos. Smith pleaded not guilty to his murder and other undisclosed charges at his arraignment Wednesday and was held at the San Bernardino County jail on $1 million bail. Smith is scheduled to be back in court on Jan. 9.

Ramos described Smith as a "career criminal" at a news conference Wednesday. Ramos added that Smith was in jail several times and previously went to state prison for street terrorism and sale of marijuana as an admitted gang member.

Smith was due to serve 12 years in prison but was released after the charges were overturned as he was said to have acted alone instead of conducting the crimes with another gang member, the district attorney explained. The district attorney’s office was working to add on enhancements to Smith’s sentence, Ramos said, KTLA reported.

"I am sick as the D.A. of San Bernardino County having to deal with these people, especially when they take the life of one of our community members, our deputy," the district attorney said. "We’re going to fight like hell to make sure that enhancement sticks."