Gwinnett County police are mourning one of their own — a corporal assigned to the South Precinct night watch.

Cpl. Mike Warnke, 38, died in his sleep overnight between Thursday and Friday, police department spokeswoman Cpl. Michele Pihera confirmed to the Daily Post.

“I can confirm that he passed away overnight,” Pihera said. “He was a husband and father to a 7-month-old baby boy. No foul play is expected.”

Warnke’s death comes less than a year after Gwinnett Officer Antwan Toney, who was also assigned to the South Precinct, was killed in the line of duty.

There was no official confirmation on the cause of Warnke’s death, but an obituary said he unexpectedly died of natural causes.

Warnke, who graduated from Brookwood High School in 2000 and later obtained a Bachelor of Applied Science degree, loved surfing, skiing, boating and spending time with his family, the obituary said.

He served in the United States Marine Corps as a corporal, where he was based in Okinawa and then Camp Pendleton in California as a military police officer. He later joined the Gwinnett County Police Department.

Warnke is preceded in death by his paternal grandfather, Edwin Martin Warnke and maternal grandmother, Florence Helen Warnke. He is survived by the love of his life of 8 years, Whitney Drennan Warnke, son, James Edwin Warnke, four pets and a number of other family members.

Family will receive friends on Wednesday from 2 to 4 p.m. and then again from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Peachtree Corners Chapel of Crowell Brothers Funeral Homes and Crematory.

Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Thursday, and interment will be held at 9 a.m. Friday at the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton.

In lieu of flowers, a GoFundMe has been set up to support Warnke’s family. It can be accessed at

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Crime Reporter

Isabel is a crime and health reporter for the Gwinnett Daily Post. She graduated from Emory University in 2016 with a B.A. in international studies. She is originally from the Boston area.

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