"Blessed Are the Peacemakers, for They Shall Be Called the Children of God." Matthew 5:9

 

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The names of the 69 Denver Police Officers who have fallen in the line of duty will forever have their names here so their sacrifice will never be forgotten.

 

Officer Phillips was shot and killed while on foot patrol. He observed a man he suspected of being a burglar. When he asked the man what his business was the man pulled out a concealed handgun and shot Officer Phillips once in the chest. Officer Phillips was able to return fire but did not strike the suspect, who fled the scene and was never caught. Officer Phillips made it to a call box and called for help but succumbed to his injuries a short time later.

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Police Officer John C. Phillips

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Tuesday, July 16, 1889

Officer Wanless was shot and killed by an intoxicated man after responding to a disturbance call at a boarding house. As he entered the house the suspect opened fire, fatally wounding him. Officer Wanless managed to return fire seriously wounding the suspect.

The suspect was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 10 years in prison.

 

Police Officer Charles F. Wanless

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Thursday, September 18, 1890

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Captain Charles Hawley was shot and killed after becoming engaged in a struggle with two men.

Captain Hawley and another officer were talking outside of a business when two men walked by. Captain Hawley made a comment to the men and one of the men reached for a gun. The other officer began struggling with the man and was shot and wounded. Captain Hawley was also shot and succumbed to his injuries.

The suspect was apprehended and sentenced to life. He was paroled on September 5, 1900. On August 29, 1901, he was one of three people killed in a train accident near Lobato, New Mexico.

Captain Hawley was preceded in death by three children; he is buried in Riverside Cemetery, Denver, Colorado.

 

Captain Charles A. Hawley

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Friday, January 16, 1891

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Special Policeman Gustave Gisin was shot and killed as he attempted to negotiate with a drunk subject who was threatening to shoot workers at a smelter factory.
The suspect was arrested and hanged on May 11, 1895.
Policeman Gisin had served with the Denver Police Department for eight years. He was survived by his wife and two children.

Special Policeman Gustave Gisin

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 8 Years

End of Watch: Tuesday, January 24, 1893

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Detective Moore was shot and killed while attempting to recapture one of three suspects who had just escaped his custody. He was taking the three from their apartment to jail when he stopped to use a call box. The prisoners used the opportunity to escape and Detective Moore took chase of one of them. During the pursuit Detective Moore fired two shots, one a warning shot into the air, and the second a shot at the suspect. The suspect then turned and shot Detective Moore in the groin, causing severe bleeding and internal injuries. He was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his wound the next day. The suspect was tried and acquitted.

Detective Alpheus J. Moore

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Wednesday, March 20, 1895

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Special Policeman Wendell Smith was shot and killed after he and his partner discovered a subject attempting to break into a grocery store as they walked their beat.

Policeman Smith had served with the Denver Police Department for two years. He was survived by his wife.

Special Policeman Wendell P. Smith

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 2 Years

End of Watch: Thursday, February 6, 1896

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Officer Clifford was shot and killed while confronting three drunken U.S. Army soldiers who had just been thrown out of a saloon. As the three were leaving Officer Clifford demanded that the men relinquish their weapons. One of the soldiers then drew his weapon and shot Officer Clifford, killing him. During the ensuing search the suspect shot and killed Officer William Griffiths under the 16th Street Bridge. The suspect was identified by the other two soldiers but he was never apprehended after a long search in which local police stopped most soldiers walking the streets.

Police Officer Thomas C. Clifford

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Sunday, August 13, 1899

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Officer William Griffiths was shot and killed during the foot pursuit of a suspect who had murdered Officer Thomas Clifford earlier in the evening.

Officer Clifford was shot and killed while confronting three drunken U.S. Army soldiers who had just been thrown out of a saloon. As the three were leaving Officer Clifford demanded that the men relinquish their weapons. One of the soldiers then drew his weapon and shot Officer Clifford, killing him. During the ensuing search the suspect shot and killed Officer William Griffiths under the 16th Street Bridge.
The suspect was identified by the other two soldiers but he was never apprehended after a long search in which local police stopped most soldiers walking the streets.

Officer Griffiths was survived by his wife and 4-year-old daughter.

Police Officer William E. Griffiths

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Sunday, August 13, 1899

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Special Officer Stuart Harvey was shot and killed while attempting to quell a riot at a polling station on election day.
Patrolman Samuel Carpenter was also shot during the disturbance and died of his wounds on January 17, 1910.

Special Officer Stuart K. Harvey

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Tuesday, November 6, 1900

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Police Surgeon Dulin and Captain William Bohanna were shot and killed after responding to a report of a shooting at a residence.


The suspect in the shooting had murdered his neighbors after a land dispute spanning several years. As the officers arrived the suspect opened fire, striking both officers. Dozens of officers responded and surrounded the house. After firing several hundred rounds into the home the officers entered it and found the suspect's body.

Police Surgeon Dulin succumbed to his injuries two days after being shot and Captain Bohanna succumbed to his injuries three days after the incident.

Police Surgeon Frank Dulin

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Tuesday, March 14, 1905

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Police Surgeon Dulin and Captain William Bohanna were shot and killed after responding to a report of a shooting at a residence.

The suspect in the shooting had murdered his neighbors after a land dispute spanning several years. As the officers arrived the suspect opened fire, striking both officers. Dozens of officers responded and surrounded the house. After firing several hundred rounds into the home the officers entered it and found the suspect's body.
Police Surgeon Dulin succumbed to his injuries two days after being shot and Captain Bohanna succumbed to his injuries three days after the incident.

Captain William Bohanna

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Wednesday, March 15, 1905

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Policeman Spellman was shot and killed while attempting to arrest three drunken men creating a disturbance on 19th Street. After giving them a warning he attempted to arrest them. One of the suspects shot him twice, fatally wounding him.

The suspect was arrested the next day and charged with Policeman Spellman's murder. He was sentenced to 10 to 15 years in prison.

Police Officer John Spellman

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Monday, June 18, 1906

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Policeman Beck was shot and killed after interrupting a burglary on 16th Street. While walking his beat at approximately 0300 hours he discovered the rear door of a business opened. He entered the business to leave a note for the owner when he was shot by someone inside. The suspect fled the scene and was never apprehended.

Policeman Beck was survived by his wife, two sons, and a daughter.

Police Officer William H. Beck

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Saturday, May 2, 1908

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Policeman William Stephens was shot and killed while questioning a possible burglary suspect. He observed the man riding a horse with another horse in tow. As he was talking with the man the suspect opened fire, fatally wounding Policeman Stephens. The suspect then left the area and sold one of the horses. The buyer discovered a bullet in the horse and contact police. The suspect was arrested and sent to jail where he died in 1930.


Policeman Stephens was survived by his wife and four children.

Police Officer William P. Stephens

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Tuesday, August 25, 1908

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Patrolman Samuel Carpenter succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained 10 years earlier while taking enforcement action during a riot on election day.
He suffered gunshot wounds to his leg and lower hip that caused medical problems which resulted in his death.
Patrolman Carpenter had served with the Denver Police Department for one year. He was survived by his wife.

Police Officer Samuel Charles Carpenter

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 1 Year

End of Watch: Monday, January 17, 1910

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Policeman William McPherson was shot and killed after being ambushed. He was talking with the barkeeper in a saloon when two masked men entered and opened fire on them. Policeman McPherson was able to return fire and wound one of the suspects. Policeman McPherson succumbed to his injuries three days later. The barkeeper died at the scene.

One of the suspects surrendered to the police a short time later. The other suspect was easily captured and it was discovered that he had been shot twice.
The suspect who surrendered told police that they intended to rob the saloon. Police discovered that he shot the other suspect out of anger when he saw him shoot Policeman McPherson and the barkeeper.
The suspect who did the killing was sentenced to death and hanged on February 26, 1916. The other suspect was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to 20 years to life.

Policeman McPherson was survived by his wife.

Police Officer William McPherson

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Tuesday, March 12, 1912

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Mounted Patrolman William Cabler succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained several hours earlier while responding to an armed robbery call.

He was shot by one of two suspects as he arrived on the scene. He was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to the wounds shortly after midnight.

Both suspects were apprehended and charged with murder. They accused each other of firing the fatal shot. One was convicted of murder and sentenced to life. The other suspect, who turned state's evidence, was convicted of robbery and sentenced to 11 to 13 years in prison.

Patrolman Cabler was survived by his wife and son.

Police Officer William H. Cabler

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Friday, Saturday, April 22, 1916

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Policeman Luther McMahill was shot and killed when he encountered a group of robbers. He had just finished his shift and riding his bicycle home when he observed the men. As he shined his flashlight at them the suspects opened fire striking Policeman McMahill in the chest. It is thought that the killers may have been the same suspects who shot and killed Colorado Springs, Colorado, Chief of Detectives John Rowan the previous day.

Two of the suspects were shot and killed in Los Angeles County, California, following a shootout in which Deputy George Van Vliet, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department, was shot and killed.

Police Officer Emerson L. McKinnon

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Friday, August 29, 1919

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Policeman McKinnon was killed when fell through an opening in an elevator shaft while assisting city firefighters battle a fire at the city shops. As he and two firefighters advanced a hose line he fell down the shaft, striking the concrete floor 20-feet below. He succumbed to his injuries six days later.

Police Officer Emerson L. McKinnon

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Friday, August 29, 1919

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Detective Klein was ambushed and murdered by an unknown assailant in retaliation for an accidental shooting he had been involved in in June 1919.

Detective Klein was participating in a bootlegging raid when he accidentally shot and killed a man. As a result, Denver's Italian community became outraged. Detective Klein was tried for the murder and released on bail. He returned to work but was ambushed in front of his own home in the early morning hours of August 29, 1919.

Detective George C. Klein

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Friday, August 29, 1919

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Patrolman Boggio was shot and killed while he and three other officers were searching the home of a man wanted in a neighboring county for tool theft. Patrolman Boggio and two of the officers had left the residence when the fourth officer called them back. As one of them entered the kitchen he was attacked by the suspect's mother who beat him with a fireplace bar. As Patrolman Boggio entered the kitchen to assist the officer he was shot by the suspect who was hiding in a stairwell. The other officers on the scene returned fire and killed the suspect. Patrolman Boggio was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his wounds two days later.

Police Officer James E. Boggio

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Thursday, January 8, 1920

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Policeman Roy Downing was shot and killed while responding to a burglary at a local residence.

The subject fled the scene and was never apprehended.

Police Officer Roy O. Downing

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 1 Years

End of Watch: Wednesday, December 1, 1920

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Policeman William Steam was shot and killed from behind by a man who was angry that the officer had just shut down an illegal dance hall. The man approached Policeman Steam and shot him in the back and back of the head, killing him.


The suspect was convicted of murder and sentenced to life.

Policeman Steam had served with the Denver Police Department for 11 years. He was survived by his wife.

Police Officer William O. Steam

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 11 Years 

End of Watch: Friday, February 18, 1921

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Policeman Clarence Zeitz was killed in an automobile accident while responding to an accident involving another police cruiser. The first accident occurred when Policeman Forrest Ross and other officers were responding to a holdup in a police riot car when he swerved to miss pedestrians at the corner of Bannock and 14th Streets. The vehicle flipped several times and struck a utility pole.


Policeman Zietz and other officers were responding to that accident when their police riot car struck a touring car at Tremont and 14th Streets.

Policeman Zietz succumbed to his injuries at the scene. Policeman Ross succumbed to his injuries two days later.

Police Officer Clarence E. Zietz

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Saturday, April 2, 1921

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Policeman Forrest Ross succumbed to injuries sustained in an automobile accident while responding to a holdup call. Policeman Clarence Zietz was killed in an automobile accident while responding to the accident involving Policeman Ross.

The first accident occurred when Policeman Ross and other officers were responding to a holdup in a police riot car when he swerved to miss pedestrians at the corner of Bannock and 14th Streets. The vehicle flipped several times and struck a utility police.

Policeman Zietz and other officers were responding to that accident when their police riot car struck a touring car at Tremont and 14th Streets.

Policeman Zietz succumbed to his injuries at the scene and Policeman Ross succumbed to his injuries at the hospital two days later.

Police Officer Forrest Ross

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Monday, April 4, 1921

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Policeman Pinkerton was electrocuted after coming into contact with a fallen arc light at 36th and Marion Streets. He was found unconscious at the intersection and rushed to a local hospital where succumbed to his injuries. Although there were no witnesses, it is presumed he was attempting to move the light out of the way of pedestrians.

Police Officer Arthur J. Pinkerton

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Monday, May 30, 1921

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Policeman Richie Rose was shot and killed after being ambushed by unknown assailants while walking his beat.

He had just finished eating breakfast with his wife when he returned to duty and was walking towards a call box. He noticed a dark car parked in the street and began to approach it. As he did so several suspects in the vehicle opened fire on him. He ran to a nearby pole to take cover and returned fire. However, several more men were waiting behind him and ambushed him from behind.

After falling to the ground the men approached him, took his gun and fired the remaining rounds into his body.

No suspects were ever identified, however Policeman Rose's last words were "Mafia, Mafia, Mafia" and it is presumed he was shot by area bootleggers.

Police Officer Richie Rose

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Tuesday, October 31, 1922

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Policeman James Shannon was shot and killed while attempting to arrest a man near 34th and Williams Streets.

The suspect was apprehended and sentenced to life. He was paroled in 1937. A year later his parole was revoked and he was returned to prison for robbing three people in Denver.

Police Officer James Shannon

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Saturday, April 4, 1925

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Patrolman Elmer Rich was shot and killed while responding to a domestic dispute on Jason Street. As he entered the home through the back door the male suspect opened fire, striking Patrolman Rich in the head and chest.

The suspect then committed suicide.

Patrolman Rich had served with the agency for only six months. He was survived by his wife and infant daughter.

Police Officer Elmer I. Rich

Badge Not Currently Available

Years of Service: 6 Months

End of Watch: Wednesday, March 23, 1927

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Patrolman Ohle was shot and killed as he and other officers searched a location after receiving a tip that illegal alcohol was being dispensed. After searching the first floor the officers went to the second floor. While entering a darkened room a man inside opened fire, striking all three officers. Patrolman Ohle was hit in the heart and killed instantly. The suspect was executed for the crime in 1930.

Police Officer Harry R. Ohle

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Thursday, November 22, 1928

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Patrolman Thomas Durkin was struck and killed by an automobile while on duty.

Patrolman Durkin had served with the Denver Police Department for 27.5 years. He was survived by his wife and 10 children.

Police Officer Thomas J. Durkin

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: 27 Years, 6 Months 

End of Watch: Thursday, January 17, 1929

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Patrolman Alston was shot and killed while investigating suspicious activity at Colfax and Broadway. He observed two men pulling a third man out of a car. He ran up to the vehicle, stuck his head in the window, and demanded to know what was going on. One of the men in the vehicle opened fire, striking Patrolman Alston in the head. One of the suspects was apprehended and the second committed suicide.

Police Officer Clarence W. Alston

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Sunday, March 24, 1929

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Officer Keating was shot and killed while investigating a burglary at a local showroom. He was using the call box on the street in front of the showroom as two youths were inside attempting to burglarize it. The suspects saw Officer Keating through the window and assumed he had seen them. In their haste to escape they broke out a window and fled. Hearing the noise, Officer Keating went to investigate the burglary. After an hour had passed the two suspects returned to the scene, but were confronted by Officer Keating who was still there. As he walked them to a call box to call for backup one of the suspect opened fire with a .38 caliber handgun.

Officer Keating was transported to a local hospital where he was able to give a description of the suspects before succumbing to his injuries. Both suspects were apprehended and sentenced to 65 years to life.

Police Officer William C. Keating

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Monday, August 31, 1931

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Detectives George Schneider and John Dea were shot and killed while attempting to question a man in connection with stolen tools.

The detectives had been called to an auction house by the owner who received the tools from the suspect. The owner suspected the tools were stolen and told the man to come back at 2:00 pm. When the man returned he was met by the detectives and was asked to come to a back room in order to separate him from the patrons of the busy auction house.
Unbeknownst to the detectives, the man had been previously arrested for carrying a concealed weapon and threatening police officers. As they walked through the door, the man drew a handgun and shot both detectives several times before going on a shooting rampage in the auction house, killing one patron and wounding two others. When the shooter came within shooting range of the wounded Detective Dea, the detective shot and killed him.

Detective Schneider was killed almost instantly in the initial gunfire.

Detective Dea was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Detective George P. Schneider

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Saturday, February 11, 1933

 

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Detectives George Schneider and John Dea were shot and killed while attempting to question a man in connection with stolen tools.

The detectives had been called to an auction house by the owner who received the tools from the suspect. The owner suspected the tools were stolen and told the man to come back at 2:00 pm. When the man returned he was met by the detectives and was asked to come to a back room in order to separate him from the patrons of the busy auction house.
Unbeknownst to the detectives, the man had been previously arrested for carrying a concealed weapon and threatening police officers. As they walked through the door, the man drew a handgun and shot both detectives several times before going on a shooting rampage in the auction house, killing one patron and wounding two others. When the shooter came within shooting range of the wounded Detective Dea, the detective shot and killed him.

Detective Schneider was killed almost instantly in the initial gunfire.

Detective Dea was transported to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Detective John F. Dea

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Saturday, February 11, 1933

 

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Police Officer Thomas J. O'Connor

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Monday, March 5, 1934

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Patrolman O'Connor was killed when he was struck by a vehicle while crossing the street.

 

Patrolman O'Donnell and Patrolman Clarence Fraker were killed in an automobile accident while responding to a call. As they entered the intersection of 25th and Marion their cruiser collided with another car.

Police Officer John J. O'Donnell

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Tuesday, May 28, 1935

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Patrolman O'Donnell and Patrolman Clarence Fraker were killed in an automobile accident while responding to a call. As they entered the intersection of 25th and Marion their cruiser collided with another car.

Police Officer Clarence E. Fraker

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Friday, March 23, 1934

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Patrolman McCasland succumbed to injuries received in a motorcycle accident one month earlier. He was on patrol when his motorcycle collided with a car at East 19th and Clarkson.

Police Officer Alson E. McCasland 

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Tuesday, May 28, 1935

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Police Surgeon Campbell was killed in an automobile accident while on duty.
Police Surgeon Campbell had served with the agency for 17 years.

He was survived by his wife and two children.

Police Officer Clarence E. Fraker

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: 17 Years

End of Watch: Tuesday, February 11, 1936

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Detective Marinaro was shot and killed while attempting to apprehend a murder suspect. He was in the suspect's kitchen when the man opened fire, striking him. He was able to return fire and wound the suspect. When the man realized he could not escape he committed suicide.

Detective Pasquale C. Marinaro

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Friday, April 17, 1936

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Patrolman Sawyer was shot and killed by a man who had called the police station and requested to be arrested because he was a madman. The suspect's real intention was to ambush the officers when they arrived. When Patrolman Sawyer and his partner approached the house the suspect swung the door open and opened fire, fatally wounding Patrolman Sawyer. The man then committed suicide.

Police Officer Forrest E. Sawyer

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Monday, March 8, 1937

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Patrolman Jacob Benner succumbed to complications from an injury sustained three months earlier.


On November 6, 1937, he and several other officers raided an illegal gambling den in the city. As Patrolman Benner climbed onto a table one of his legs went through it. Several days later Patrolman Benner went to a local hospital where doctors discovered that he had ruptured a blood vessel in the leg and contracted blood poisoning. He died as a result of the blood poisoning on February 14, 1938.

Police Officer Jacob Benner

Badge 282

Tour of Duty: 2 Years

End of Watch: Monday, February 14, 1938

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Detective Fred Renovato was shot and killed on 22nd Street, between Larimer Street and Lawrence Street, while attempting to stop a crazed man from harming his girlfriend.


He had responded to calls of the man pulling a woman from an apartment by her hair. As he approached the man he was shot four times. He was able to return fire but did not strike the suspect.

The suspect was apprehended and convicted of his murder. He was executed in 1939.

Detective Renovato was survived by his wife and two sons.

Detective Fred Renovato

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Thursday, October 13, 1938

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Patrolman Burns was killed when he fell down a flight of stairs at the Albany Hotel. He had been assigned to the hotel during a convention.

Patrolman Burns had served with the Denver Police Department for 5 years. He was survived by his wife and two children.

Police Officer Earl F. Burns 

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: 5 Years

End of Watch: Thursday, February 16, 1939

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Patrolman Hall was shot and killed after he and his partner stopped a vehicle that had just been stolen. When the stopped it two suspects fled on foot and split up. Patrolman Hall's partner heard Patrolman Hall's shotgun and discharge and heard several other shots. He found Patrolman Hall and the suspect suffering from gunshot wounds.

 

They were transported to a local hospital where Patrolman Hall succumbed to his injuries the next day


The suspect was sentenced to life in prison. In March of 1957 his sentence was commuted to 25 years to life.

Police Officer Virgil M. Hall 

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Thursday, July 5, 1945

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Patrolman William Claassen was shot and killed while he and his partner investigated a burglary-in-progress at a local pharmacy.

When they entered the store the suspect opened fire, fatally wounding Patrolman Claassen. Both officers were able to return fire and kill the suspect.

Patrolman Claassen was a U.S. Navy veteran. He is buried at Fairmont Cemetery in Denver, Colorado.

Police Officer William Allen Claassen 

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Wednesday, February 11, 1953

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Patrolman Donald Seick was shot and killed when he attempted to question a man while he was off duty.


Patrolman Seick was at a gas station when he saw a man walk out of the building very quickly. Patrolman Seick was familiar with the subject and suspected he had just robbed the service station. He followed the man a short distance before asking him what he was doing in the service station. The man shot Patrolman Seick in the chest, with the gun still in his jacket pocket.

The man fled the scene but was apprehended several days later and sentenced to life. He was paroled in 1974.

Patrolman Seick was a U.S. Army veteran. He was survived by his wife and six children.

Police Officer Donald L. Seick

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Sunday, January 12, 1958

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Patrolman Edward Smerdel was accidentally shot and killed while cleaning his service revolver at a police substation.


Patrolman Smerdel had served with the Denver Police Department for 12 years.

He was survived by his wife and one child.

Police Officer Edward H. Smerdel

Badge 773

Years of Service: 12 Years

End of Watch: Sunday, July 16, 1961

Detective Suer was shot and killed when the restaurant he was eating in was robbed. He had just finished working a uniformed overtime assignment at the Regis College Field House and had met his wife for dinner at a local cafe. While eating three armed men entered the cafe and Detective Suer attempted to take action. Shots were exchanged and Detective Suer and a suspect were fatally wounded. Four additional other suspects were arrested the next day and two were sentenced to life.

Detective Darrell J. Suer

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Sunday, March 11, 1962

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Patrolman Knobbe was shot and killed after a short chase of a stolen vehicle. He had noticed the vehicle which matched a description of a stolen vehicle earlier in the evening. After a short chase the vehicle crashed and Patrolman Knobbe approached it. As he opened the door the suspect shot Patrolman Knobbe in the stomach. The suspect was convicted and sentenced to death but had his sentenced commuted to life. He was later shot and killed during a prison escape attempt.

Police Officer Carl B. Knobbe

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Wednesday, September 12, 1962

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Patrolman Paul Major was shot and killed during a foot pursuit. He and his partner had stopped a car which turned out to be stolen. Several of the occupants of the vehicle fled on foot and Patrolman Major chased one of them. As he entered an alley on South Broadway he was shot in the chest and head. The suspect was apprehended and sentenced to life.

Patrolman Major was survived by his wife, son, and daughter.

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Police Officer Paul Major

Badge 50051

Years of Service: 15 Years

End of Watch: Wednesday, January 20, 1965

Officer Wilson was accidentally shot and killed by another officer when he walked into the briefing room at the District One police station. The other officer was showing a gun to a third officer when it accidentally discharged, striking Officer Wilson.

Officer Wilson had served with the agency for 9 years. He was survived by his wife and three children.

Police Officer Paul D. Wilson

Badge 63048

Years of Service: 9 Years

End of Watch: Saturday, September 14, 1968

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Patrolman William Wirtz succumbed to injuries sustained from an accident three weeks earlier, when his police motorcycle was struck by a vehicle at the intersection of Speer Boulevard and Lawrence Street.

Police Officer William J. Wirtz

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Wednesday, February 10, 1971

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Patrolman Nading was shot and killed while attempting to quell a disturbance on East Colfax Avenue. An off duty officer came to assist Patrolman Nading and took control of a prisoner. As Patrolman Nading walked around his cruiser to notify dispatch about a growing crowd he was attacked by two men. He was able to get one of the men into a headlock the second man grabbed his gun and shot him in the back. A suspect was arrested but acquitted of murder.

Police Officer Merle E. Nading

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Sunday, October 3, 1971

 

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 Officer Smith was shot and killed while he and his partner responded to a disturbance at a bar on Federal Boulevard. Unbeknownst to the officers two suspects were inside committed an armed robbery at the time. As Officer Smith opened the door one of the suspects inside opened fire, fatally wounding him. Both suspects were later apprehended. 

Police Officer William E. Smith

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Thursday, January 23, 1975

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Detective DeBruno was shot and killed while he and his partner attempted to serve warrants on a man wanted for murder in Canada. Detective DeBruno was shot in the chest during the arrest.


Detective DeBruno's partner and the suspect were also shot and wounded in the shootout.

The suspect was sentenced to life in prison, but becomes eligible for parole in 2006. His parole was denied. He has another hearing in December, 2007.

Detective Donald DeBruno

Badge Not Currently Available 

Years of Service: Not Currently Available 

End of Watch: Wednesday, December 10, 1975

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Patrolwoman Kathleen Garcia was shot and killed following her shift in District One.


Patrolwoman Garcia was sitting in her patrol car in front of her house when someone approached the driver side door; after a struggle the assailant shot her in the head, severing her spinal cord. The suspect fled the scene as Patrolwoman Garcia tried to reach her home. She collapsed in the yard and was taken to a nearby hospital where she succumbed to her injuries later that day.

Patrolwoman Garcia's service weapon was missing from the scene, and it is believed that the suspect shot her at close range. A neighbor was tried for her murder, but was acquitted, and the case remains unsolved.

Patrolwoman Garcia had served with the agency for only six weeks and was survived by her mother.

Police Officer Kathleen Garcia

Badge 80040

Tour of Duty: 1 Month, 2 Weeks

End of Watch: Saturday, March 28, 1981

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Officer Pollock was shot and killed during a foot pursuit of an armed robber. He and his partner were eating lunch when a call came of an armed robbery across the street from the restaurant. The officers observed two suspects run out of the business and gave chase. Officer Pollock chased one man into a residential area. As Officer Pollock ran through an opened gate the suspect ambushed him and shot him in the head. The suspect was then shot and killed by Officer Pollock's partner.

Officer Pollock had been with the agency for seven years and was survived by his mother and brother.

Police Officer Patrick Pollock

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 7 Years

End of Watch: Friday, December 12, 1986

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Patrolman Wier was shot and killed while responding to a man with a gun call on South Pennsylvania Street. When he and his partner arrived they saw the man in a home holding a shotgun and took cover. The suspect then opened fire. As Patrolman Wier stood to return fire he was struck in the head. Two other responding officers were wounded before the suspect committed suicide.

Patrolman Wier was survived by his wife and two children.

Police Officer James Weir

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: Not Currently Available

End of Watch: Wednesday, June 3, 1987

 

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Detective Robert Wallis was killed when he was struck by a man fleeing other officers. Detective Wallis and his partner were in an unmarked cruiser monitoring the chase of a suspect who had just committed an armed robbery. The suspect was driving northbound on Tennyson Street directly towards their unmarked cruiser. The two detectives attempted to escape their vehicle but Detective Wallis was struck by the suspect as he attempted to run across the street. The suspect was later shot and killed by other officers.


Detective Wallis had been with the agency for over 20 years and was survived by his wife, daughter, two sons, sister and a 5-day-old granddaughter.

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Detective Robert W. Wallis

Badge 67020

Tour of Duty: 20 Years

End of Watch: Tuesday, February 9, 1988

 

Officer Shawn Leinen was shot and killed while in a foot chase of a juvenile subject whom he had observed breaking into a car.


Officer Leinen was in the process of taking a shots fired call when he made the observation. He chased the youth into a dead end when the boy turned and fired, striking him in the chest. The rounds were stopped by his vest but knocked him down and stunned him. The youth then stood over Officer Leinen and shot him in the head.

Witnesses heard Officer Leinen shout at the youth "Don't do it man!" before being shot. On September 1st, 1995, the suspect was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison.

Officer Leinen was a veteran of the Wyoming Air National Guard and served with the Denver Police Department for three years. He was survived by his expectant wife.

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Police Officer Shawn Leinen

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 3 Years

End of Watch: Saturday, February 25, 1995

 

Police Officer Ronald DeHerrera was killed and another officer was injured when their patrol car was struck by stolen vehicle.


Officer DeHerrera had just graduated from the academy the day before the incident. The two officers were heading to the scene of a car prowler as the suspect was heading in their direction in a stolen Ford Mustang. The suspect struck their patrol car in an intersection at an estimated 95 mph.

Officer DeHerrera was in the passenger seat and suffered massive head and internal injuries. He succumbed to his injuries on April 1th, 1997. The other officer suffered minor injuries and made a full recovery.

The suspect was denied parole for the fourth time in January 2004.

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Police Officer Ronald DeHerrera

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 2 Days

End of Watch: Tuesday, April 1, 1997

 

Officer Bruce VanderJagt was shot and killed while assisting another agency in an attempt to apprehend burglary suspects they had chased for 30 miles into Denver. As Officer VanderJagt was approaching the apartment the suspect opened fire on him with a fully automatic SKS rifle and he was struck several times in the head and torso. He was pronounced dead at 3:58 pm at Denver Medical Health Center.


The suspect was found dead at approximately 4:30 pm from a self-inflicted gunshot wound from Officer VanderJagt's weapon. The initial suspect who committed the burglary, which eventually led to Officer VanderJagt's murder, was sentenced to life in prison for her role but was later released to a halfway house.

He is survived by his wife and daughter.

Police Officer Bruce Vanderjagt

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 11 Years

End of Watch: Wednesday, November 12, 1997

 

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Detective Michael Dowd succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained 28 years earlier when he was shot by an escaped cop-killer near the intersection of California Street and 15th Street.


The subject had escaped while was serving a prison sentence for the November 2nd, 1937, murder of Deputy Sheriff Oscar Meyer, of the Eagle County Sheriff's Office. He and three accomplices where en route to Meadlark Shopping Center when they were spotted by Detective Dowd and his partner.

The vehicle fled into an alley when the detectives attempted a traffic stop. The subject stopped and then fled on foot, with Detective Dowd in pursuit. Shots were exchanged during the pursuit and Detective Dowd was struck in the abdomen. Despite being wounded, he was able to return fire and killed the subject.

Detective Dowd's health continued to deteriorate and he eventually died as a direct result of his wounds on December 6th, 1997.

Detective Michael E. Dowd

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 10 Years

End of Watch: Saturday, December 6, 1997

 

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Officer Licata died after being involved in a motorcycle accident while responding to the scene of a construction accident with lights and siren.


During the response, Officer Licata's Harley-Davidson motorcycle was involved in a collision with a small vehicle. He was thrown from the bike. He was transported to a local hospital where he died a short time later.
Officer Licata had received eight commendations during his four years with the Denver Police Department.

 

He is survived by his 3-year-old daughter.

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Police Officer Dennis Michael Licata

Badge Not Currently Available

Tour of Duty: 4 Years

End of Watch: Wednesday, September 6, 2000

Detective Donald Young was shot and killed at a rental hall on West Mississippi Street.


He and another officer were in uniform, working an off duty job at a private celebration, when a man approached both officers from behind and opened fire on them in an unprovoked attack. The shooting occurred at approximately 0100 hours as patrons were leaving as the event ended. Detective Young was killed and the second officer was wounded.

The suspect fled the scene, but was captured on June 5th, 2005, in Culiacan on the western coast of Mexico. U.S. Marshals and Mexican authorities located and arrested him without incident. The suspect was sentenced to 80 years in prison on October 25, 2005.

Detective Young had served with the Denver Police Department for 12 years, and was assigned to the Fugitive / Bomb Unit.

He is survived by his wife, two young daughters, and a son.

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Detective Donald Ray Young

Badge 93021

Tour of Duty: 12 Years

End of Watch: Sunday, May 8, 2005

Patrolman David Roberts succumbed to injuries associated with a gunshot wound sustained on March 29, 1985. He was shot in the face while attempting to arrest a suspect at an apartment building on South Clarkson Street.


He was left paralyzed on the left side of his body, and his condition continued to deteriorate until he passed away.

Patrolman Roberts had served with the Denver Police Department for six years.

 

He was survived by his daughter, a brother, and two sisters.

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Police Officer David Roberts

Badge 79036

Tour of Duty: 6 Years

End Of Watch: Sunday, May 27, 2011

Police Officer Celena Hollis was shot and killed while attempting to break up a fight at a jazz festival in Denver's City Park shortly after 8:00 pm.

Two groups of people had begun to fight and Officer Hollis intervened, attempting to stop the fight. One of the subjects involved in the fight opened fire with a handgun, striking Officer Hollis in the head. She was transported to a local hospital where she succumbed to her wounds.

One subject was taken into custody at the scene and charged with first degree murder. He subsequently pleaded guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to 26 years in prison.

Officer Hollis had served with the Denver Police Department for seven years and acted as the president of the Denver Black Police Officers Organization. She had previously served with the Detroit Police Department for four years.

She is survived by her daughter.

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Police Officer Celena Hollis

Badge 05162

Tour of Duty: 7 Years

End Of Watch: Sunday, June 24, 2012

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