LINE OF DUTY DEATHS
Roll Call of all Line of Duty Deaths. A Line of Duty Death is classified as the death of an active sworn member by felonious or accidental means during the course of performing police functions while on or off duty.
Patrolman James J. O’Brien
Patrolman James J. O'Brien, Star #1544, aged 36 years, was a 5 year, 11 month, 20 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 15th District - Englewood.
On September 14, 1928, at 1:45 a.m., Officer O'Brien while on patrol with his partner, Patrolman Raymond Nelligan, observed a wanted auto thief, Ray C. Bullard, at the southwest corner of 62nd and Halsted Streets. As Officer O'Brien attempted to make the arrest, the thief produced a revolver and fired several shots wounding both officers. Bullard was also wounded by the officers return fire but escaped. Both officers were taken to St. Bernard Hospital. Officer O'Brien died two days later on September 16, 1928. Officer Nelligan eventually recovered but endured a long recovery from the chest wound he sustained.
Three hours after the shooting, police received a call reporting a man fitting Bullard’s description seeking medical treatment at a doctor’s office in Oak Lawn, Illinois. Captain of Detectives John Egan ordered a patrol car to go to the doctor’s office and apprehend the man. Upon arrival, Bullard surrendered and confessed to the murder while in police custody.
On September 17, 1928, Bullard was held by the Coroner to the Grand Jury, which indicted him for murder. On February 2, 1929, Bullard was convicted and sentenced to 30 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet by Judge Kavanaugh.
Officer O'Brien was laid to rest in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Alsip, Illinois.
Patrolman James J. O'Brien, born January 24, 1892, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 27, 1922. He earned 2 Credible Mentions during his career. On October 31, 1926, Officer O’Brien shot and wounded the murderer, Stanley Gracyas, of Sergeant Floyd Beardsley.
Officer O'Brien was survived by his wife and five children.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #10719.
Patrolman Michael O’Brien
Patrolman Michael O'Brien, Star #216, aged 49 years, was a 14 year, 10 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 2nd Precinct - Deering Street Station.
On April 2, 1887, at approximately 11:15 p.m., Officer O'Brien was working with his partner, Patrolman William Dillon. The two officers responded to a disturbance behind Burke’s Saloon located at No. 2741 South Archer Avenue near Quinn Street. The saloon was a well-known Irish drinking establishment. The drunks and disorderly roughnecks whose noisy carrying on had been creating unusual havoc for the beat cops. Once the officers arrived the observed Timothy O'Grady through the crowd as he stuck out from being well known to the officers as a troublemaker.
As the officers moved in, mayhem ensued and the crowd began to run in every direction. Some ran around the corner into the alley, others ran into and through the saloon exiting out the front. Officer O’Brien took off in pursuit of the patrons through the saloon. He caught up to O'Grady on the sidewalk and immediately recognized him. Knowing him to have concealed weapons on his person, a scuffle ensued as he attempted to arrest O’Grady. O'Grady managed to break free and run around the corner onto Quinn Street, making his way down a flight of stairs that led to a side street. O'Grady soon found himself trapped between Officer O’Grady who had pursued and Officer Dillon who had stationed himself in the rear of the saloon. O'Grady produced a revolver and quickly fired four to five shots at Officer O’Brien, all of which missed. With the officers caught in crossfire, neither was able to return fire for fear of hitting the other. O'Grady took advantage of the situation and fled down the main sidewalk and headed over to O’Malley’s Packing House located one half block away on Quinn Street. With both officers in pursuit, each was able to get one shot off each at the fleeing O'Grady.
The officers then lost sight of O'Grady and he appeared to have vanished. The officers stood on the corner of Quinn Street for approximately ten minutes and at 11:30 p.m. O’Grady was spotted attempting to sneak through the alley. Officer O’Brien shouted, “Hold on there!” O’Grady responded by firing one shot from his revolver. Both officer returned fire as they gave chase. O’Grady turned one more time and fired another shot. This time Officer O’Brien was hit in the chest, the bullet penetrating his right lung and exited his back. He shouted to his partner saying, “Bill, I am gone! Send for the priest.” Officer Dillon then fired all his remaining rounds at O’Grady and then returned to his partner, who was now choking on his own blood. Officer Dillon Carried O’Brien back to the front of Burke’s Saloon and headed to the nearest patrol box and summoned the patrol wagon.
The patrol wagon responded and they loaded Officer O’Brien and transported him to his residence located at No. 2726 South Hickory Street. Upon arrival he was unconscious and by the time Doctors Egan and Kennedy arrived he had lost a great deal of blood. After examining his wound the doctors concluded it to be fatal. Officer O’Brien lingered there through the night before succumbing to his wounds the next day on April 3, 1887.
Following the incident Detective Headquarters was notified and two of the cities most well regarded detectives, Bonfield and Treharn, were awakened to pursue O’Grady. It was well known that O’Grady lived with his father who was known as a respectable man who ran a blacksmith shop. The detectives went to their residence located at No. 2723 South Archer Avenue. O’Grady was found inside and arrested. A .32 caliber pistol was found on him but it was determined that Officer O'Brien was shot with a .44 caliber pistol. O’Grady insisted that he was innocent and claimed it was another man who shot Officer O'Brien. He stood trial and was convicted despite several other points being in his favor. O’Gardy was sentenced to 17 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet.
After O’Grady was convicted the case took a strange turn. A man named Dyer Scanlan was arrested and convicted of the May 12, 1888 shooting of Patrolman Martin Nolan who was shot six times. Scanlan was sentenced to 10 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet. While in prison he believed that he contracted tuberculosis and was dying. On August 9, 1890, faced with his own mortality, Scanlan confessed to the murder of Officer O’Brien. Six days later when all the facts came out O’Grady received a full pardon by Governor John P. Algeld. Scanlan never died from tuberculosis and was released from prison on March 20, 1895.
As Scanlan was released from the penitentiary, detectives from the Chicago Police Department were waiting to take him into custody for the murder of Officer O’Brien. He was charged with murder in addition to four other murders, numerous assaults, burglaries, and robberies that he admitted to while in prison.
Officer O'Brien’s funeral mass was held at St. Bridget Catholic Church located at 2928 South Archer Avenue and he was laid to rest on April 7, 1887 in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Patrolman Michael O'Brien, born in 1838, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on May 7, 1872.
Officer O'Brien was survived by his wife.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #2804.
Probationary Patrolman Michael W. O’Brien
Probationary Patrolman Michael W. O'Brien, Star #389, aged 22 years, was an 11 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 3rd Precinct - Desplaines Street Station.
On November 11, 1885, at 8:30 p.m., Officer O'Brien heard the sound of gunfire coming from Ritterberg’s Shoe Shop located at No. 191 Adams Street (present day 808 West Adams Street). He proceeded to the scene to investigate and ran into the shop. Officer O'Brien observed distraught shoemaker, Max Ritterberg, age 31, standing in the middle of the floor with his hands behind him. He also saw Joseph Doubek, a shoemaker, also in the shop. The officer asked, “What was that shot?” Ritterberg replied, “There was no shot fired in here.” Officer O'Brien then said, “Yes, there was. Who fired it?” The officer then stepped towards Ritterberg and reached forward to take hold of him. As Officer O'Brien moved in, Ritterberg produced a revolver from behind his back and thrust the gun against the officer’s right breast and fired. Immediately Officer O'Brien turned and ran from the shop. As he exited the front door, Ritterberg fired one more time.
Officer O'Brien continued to run across the street to a patrol box in an attempt to summon the patrol wagon. As he ran he attempted to remove the call box key from his pocket, but his strength failed him as he neared a group of citizens who had gathered by the patrol box. He exclaimed, “My God, I’m shot!” and fell into the arms of the bystanders. C. K. Taggert, a railroad man, took the officer’s call box key and pulled an alarm for the patrol wagon. At the same time John Minucciani, a saloonkeeper, also sent in a call from his private call box. Officer O'Brien was then carried into James H. Kirkley’s drug store and Dr. Stewart made an examination of the wound. He noted that the bullet had entered the right breast and passed through his body, exiting the center of his back. Officer O'Brien was mortally wounded and near death he requested a priest. One of the bystanders ran to St. Patrick’s Church and returned with a clergyman who absolved the dying officer.
With the patrol wagon having already arrived, they loaded Officer O'Brien and took him to his father’s home located at No. 81 West 13th Place (present day 542 West 13th Place) per his request. Officer O'Brien succumbed to his injuries about an hour after he arrived.
After Ritterberg fired the second shot, he ran from the shop diagonally across the street towards his home located at No. 208 West Adams Street (present day 827 West Adams Street). As he ran, a grocer named J. O’Leary attempted to intercept him with the intention of stopping him. As O’Leary moved in, Ritterberg leveled his revolver at him and fired. The bullet whizzed by O’Leary’s head and he quickly gave up his attempt to stop Ritterberg. Ritterberg continued on to his home where he pushed past his wife, who was standing in the front door after hearing the gunshots. He then thrust aside his niece who was also there and ran into a back room where he placed his revolver to his temple and pulled the trigger. He fell at the threshold of the door and lay in a pool of his own blood dying instantly.
After the incident Joseph Doubek, employed by Ritterberg, gave the following story of the shooting. A few days ago a man entered the shop with a new .38 caliber double action Colt revolver that he wanted to sell for $85.00. Doubek and Ritterberg both chipped in and purchased the gun and Ritterberg took it. On November 11, 1885, Ritterberg had left the shop for quite sometime and had been drinking at a saloon around the corner. He returned to the shoe shop at 8:00 p.m., took out the pistol and said he was going to try it. Doubek tried to dissuade him him from doing so, but he persisted. Doubek then said, “Well, if you’re going to shoot it do it in the corner over there.” Ritterberg replied, “All right” and went to the corner and fired the gun. He then stood upright and held the revolver behind his back. A moment latter Officer O’Brien entered the shop.
Officer O'Brien’s funeral mass was held at Holy Family Church and he was laid to rest on November 15, 1885 in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Probationary Patrolman Michael W. O'Brien, born in 1863, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on December 15, 1884.
Officer O'Brien was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association and the Holy Family Total Abstinence & Benevolent Society. He was survived by his fiancée, father and brother.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #2802.
In response to the tragic events of May 4, 1886 a commemorative nine-foot (2.7 meter) bronze statue of a Chicago policeman was commissioned to honor the sacrifice of the policemen who lost their lives that fateful night. The statue was designed by Frank Batchelder of St. Paul Minnesota in 1889 and sculpted by sculptor Johannes Gelert of New York, New York. The statue's marble pedestal was ordered to have an inscription on it. The inscription is the command that Captain William Ward delivered in the Haymarket just before the bomb was thrown that fateful night: "In the name of the People of Illinois, I command peace." The statue was funded by private funds raised by the Union League Club of Chicago. The statue would become the first known monument erected in the United States honoring policemen. Erected in the middle of Haymarket Square located on Randolph Street just west of Desplaines Street, the statue was unveiled on May 30, 1889. The unveiling was conducted by Frank Degan, the son of Officer Mathias Degan who was killed in the Haymarket Affair. Over the years the statue would be moved seven times, it would also be repaired and rebuilt several times due to vandalism.
Location #1 - Haymarket Square (May 30, 1889 thru July, 1900): Haymarket Square was the first location in which the statue would be erected. It was placed in the middle of Randolph Street just west of Desplaines Street, as seen in the image above. The statue interfered with the flow of traffic in this busy area, and it became an object of vandalism. As a result, it was moved in 1900 about one mile west, to Randolph Street and Ogden Avenue, near Union Park.
Location #2 - Randolph Street and Ogden Avenue (July, 1900 thru 1928): The statue remained at its second location for just over 27 years. A medallion, which is evident in the photo above, is located just above the inscription. Also visible are two white dots just below the inscription. Those two dots are of the original mounting holes for the medallion. It is believed that due to vandalism, the medallion was moved higher up the monuments pedestal. On May 4, 1927, the 41st anniversary of the Haymarket affair, a Chicago Surface Lines streetcar jumped its tracks and crashed into the statue's pedestal. The force of the crash dislodged the statue from the pedestal and the statue fell over falling off the base. The motorman, William Schultz, of the streetcar stated that the brakes failed as he was rounding the corner. He also later said that he was "sick of seeing that policeman with his arm raised." The city restored the statue in 1928 and moved the pedestal and statue into nearby Union Park.
Location #3 - Union Park (1928 thru June 2, 1957): The monument was located near Washington Boulevard on the North side of the street facing south and it remained in Union Park for nearly three decades. The finials, which flank the pedestal, had been modified after one of the monument's earlier moves. This change is believed to be the result of vandal damage or from being stripped at various times. During the 1950's, construction of the Kennedy Expressway erased about half of the old, run-down Haymarket Square Area, and on June 2, 1957, the statue was moved to Randolph Street and the Kennedy Expressway.
Location #4 - Randolph Street and the Kennedy Expressway (June 2, 1957 thru February 5, 1972): The Statue was situated on the north side of Randolph Street a block west of Desplaines Street at 700 West Randolph Street, just to the east of the new Kennedy Expressway. A new platform was built to support the pedestal and statue overlooking the expressway, only 200 feet from its original location. After years of vandalism the pedestal was badly stained and chipped as can be seen in the photo above.
On May 4, 1968, The Haymarket statue was vandalized with black paint, the 82nd anniversary of the Haymarket affair, following a confrontation between police and demonstrators at a protest against the Vietnam War. The city named the monument a historic landmark in the mid-1960’s, but this did not prevent further vandalism, presumably in protest against police brutality in the context of opposition to the Vietnam War and social inequality in the United States. On October 6, 1969, in what was almost certainly a deliberate symbolic reenactment of the original Haymarket meeting, someone placed a powerful explosive between the legs of the statue, blowing out about a hundred windows nearby and sending chunks of the statue's legs onto the expressway below. Weather Underground members, known as Weatherman, took credit for the blast and battled police elsewhere in the streets of Chicago over several days. The statue was rebuilt and unveiled on May 4, 1970.
The statue was repaired, but early on the morning of October 5, 1970, it was blown up again. The body of the statue badly bent a nearby railing as it fell before settling on the expressway embankment, and one of the legs landed two hundred feet away. Immediately after the blast, a person or persons called various news outlets to declare that the bombing was the work of the Weathermen. According to one newspaper, the caller said, "We just blew up Haymarket Square Statue for the second year in a row to show our allegiance to our brothers in the New York prisons and our black brothers everywhere. This is another phase of our revolution to overthrow our racist and fascist society. Power to the People." The two attacks on the police statue were among several politically-motivated bombings throughout the country at the time.
An angry and determined Mayor Richard J. Daley had the statue repaired again and put under 24 police protection. On February 5, 1972, the statue was moved to the State Street Chicago Police Headquarters Building. The pedestal remained at this location for 24 more years and was finally removed in 1996. It is unknown whether the pedestal was scrapped or placed into storage by the city.
Location #5 - State Street Chicago Police Headquarters (February 5, 1972 thru October 5, 1976): On February 5, 1972, the statue was placed on a new marble pedestal located in the lobby of the State Street Chicago Police Department Headquarters Building at 1121 South State Street. The statue remained on display in the headquarters lobby for four years and eight months. On October 5, 1976, the statue was then relocated to the new Chicago Police Training Academy. The State Street Chicago Police Department Headquarters Building has since been raised and a new commercial and residential complex was built in its place.
Location #6 - Chicago Police Training Academy (October 5, 1976 thru June 1, 2007): On October 5, 1976, the statue was moved from the Old Chicago Police Headquarters Building and placed on a new granite pedestal, located in a secure outdoor courtyard at the Chicago Police Training Academy located at 1300 West Jackson Street for twenty years.
Location #7 - Michigan Avenue Chicago Police Headquarters (June 1, 2007 thru Present): On June 1, 2007 the statue was rededicated at Chicago Police Headquarters located at 3501 South State Street and placed on a new pedestal. The rededication unveiling was conducted by Geraldine Doceka, Officer Mathias Degan's great-granddaughter. The statue currently resides at this location.
Detective Patrick M. O’Brien
Detective Patrick M. O'Brien, Star #188, aged 31 years, was a 5 year, 7 month veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 2nd Precinct - West Twelfth Street Station.
On August 1, 1881, Patrolman James Ray was off duty and sitting on the front steps of No. 68 Rebecca Street (present day 533 West 15th Place). While he was conversing with a friend his attention was distracted by the sound of a pistol shot. The gunfire came from No. 50 Rebecca Street (present day 515 West 15th Place). Officer Ray quickly went to the scene of the shooting, and on his way saw one Christ Dixon, who lives in the immediate vicinity, running out of the yard into the alley. Officer Ray stopped him and inquired what he was running for; he stated that Thomas Cahill, of No. 50 Rebecca Street (present day 515 West 15th Place), had just shot and tried to kill him on account of some trivial dispute which they had some time previous.
Upon examination the officer found a gun shot wound in Dixon's thigh. Being satisfied of the truth of Dixon’s statement Officer Ray went into the house, Dixon following him inside. He found Cahill concealed in a bedroom up stairs. Officer Ray then asked Cahill what he shot Dixon for and Cahill denied having fired any shots. Cahill then demanded to see Dixon who immediately appeared from behind Officer Ray and accused Cahill with the shooting. No sooner had the accusation been made, Cahill struck Dixon in the face knocking him down the stairs. Dixon then ran from the house, leaving Officer Ray alone with the Cahill and his family. Officer Ray then proceeded to place Cahill under arrest when he resisted. His family, consisting of his father, mother and brother, then stepped in and helped him in resisting said arrest. Great violence was directed towards Officer Ray. However, after a severe struggle, Officer Ray succeeded in getting the door open and dragged the prisoner outside. Now outside on the top of a stairway leading to the second story in rear of the house, Officer Ray attempted to get him down the stairs. Cahill’s undershirt, which the officer held, suddenly ripped in the back leaving one half of it in the officer's hands. This caused Officer Ray to lose his balance and fall down the stairs some distance. By the time he regained his footing Cahill had ran back into the house and locked all doors.
Meanwhile, someone in the neighborhood had turned in an alarm for a patrol wagon which soon appeared on the scene with Captain O'Donnell and five patrolmen, among them being Detective Patrick M. O'Brien. Acting in obedience to orders received from the Captain, then present on the ground, Detective O'Brien and Officers Ray and Hefferman went up to the door. Knocking loudly at the door, they demanded admittance, stating that they were police officers. Cahill refused to open the door; Detective O'Brien and Officer Ray then put their shoulders to the door and forced it open a few inches. At the same time Cahill put his revolver into the opening and fired several shots, wounding Officers Ray and Hefferman slightly and Detective O'Brien mortally. Immediately, other officers returned fire seriously wounding Cahill. Detecive O'Brien was shot in the left breast and was taken to the West 12th Street Station. He lingered there for two days before succumbing to his wounds at 3:00 p.m. on August 3, 1881.
Cahill was arrested and found guilty at Coroner's trial. He was sentenced to life in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet.
Detective O'Brien was waked at his residence, his funeral mas was held at Holy Family Church and he was laid to rest in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Detective Patrick M. O'Brien, born in 1850, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department in January, 1876.
Detective O'Brien was a member and President of Division No. 7 of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, member of the Board of Trustees of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association, Court Fidelity Independent Order of Odd Fellows and The Police and Fire State Association. He was survived by his wife and five small children.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #2799.
Patrolman Richard James O’Brien
Patrolman Richard James O'Brien, Star #5337, aged 33 years, was an 8 year, 10 month, 29 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Bureau of Field Services - Tactical Services: Unit 710 - Gang Crimes Enforcement South.
On February 9, 1982, at 2:03 p.m., Patrolmen William Peter Fahey and Richard J. O'Brien were on duty working beat 6162. They pulled over a brown 1978 Chevy Impala at 8110 South Morgan Street for failing to obey a stop sign. The driver of the vehicle was Jackie F. Wilson, age 21 of 11409 South May Street and seated next to him was his brother, Andrew Wilson age 29 of 11409 South May Street. It is alleged that at the time of the traffic stop, the brothers were on their way to free convicted cop murderer, Edgar Hope. According to eyewitness testimony, Jackie Wilson exited the vehicle before the officers approached. He began to argue with Officer O’Brien and refused to produce his driver’s license. Officer Fahey after noticing a suspicious object on Andrew Wilson ordered him to exit the vehicle. Once outside Officer Fahey attempted to place Andrew Wilson in custody and struggle ensued. During the struggle Officer Fahey was disarmed by Andrew Wilson who then proceeded to shoot Officer Fahey once. The bullet entered Officer Fahey’s head behind the left ear, fragmenting upon entry causing severe brain damage. Andrew Wilson then turned on Officer O’Brien shooting him three times in the chest. Jackie Wilson then noticed Officer O'Brien was still moving and shouted to his brother, "still up and about." Andrew Wilson then jumped onto their vehicle's trunk lid and shot Officer O'Brien two more times, once in arm and once in the hip.
Following the shooting, the brothers jumped back into their car and drove off. For some unknown reason the murderers made a U-turn and returned to the scene of the crime where they proceeded to grab both officers’ firearms and then fled southbound on Morgan Street making good their escape. Help was first summoned to the scene when a voice was heard over the police radio, "Emergency! Emergency! Two policemen have been shot at 81st and Morgan." It was later learned to be the voice of a witness to the shooting who ran to the squad car and grabbed the microphone when he saw the officers fall. The eyewitness testified, "The police officer [Fahey] had subdued him enough to the point where he could put the handcuffs on, and then the man [Andrew] reached around behind the officer and came up with a shiny pistol.”
Officer Fahey was transported to Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park by beat 672 where he fell into a coma and was pronounced dead at 11:14 a.m. on February 10, 1982. Officer O'Brien was also transported to Little Company of Mary Hospital in Evergreen Park by beat 672 and was pronounced dead on arrival by Dr. Birfe at 2:20 p.m. on February 9, 1982.
On February 13, 1982, the getaway car was recovered at 114th Street and May Avenue. Not far away from the Wilson’s residence. Officer moved in and the Wilson brothers were apprehended and arrested. The officers service revolvers were also recovered from their residence.
In 1983, Andrew Wilson was sentenced to death and Jackie Wilson was sentenced to life in prison without parole. They were later granted retrials on the grounds that they should have been initially tried separately. During the retrial, Jackie Wilson was convicted of first degree murder in Officer O'Brien's death, but was acquitted of his part in Officer Fahey's murder. Andrew Wilson was convicted of two counts of murder and two counts of armed robbery in the deaths of the officers. On January 10, 2003, Governor George Ryan commuted Andrew Wilson’s sentence, along with 167 other inmates on death row, to life in prison. In 2007, Andrew Wilson died in prison.
Tragically Patrolmen William P. Fahey and Richard James O'Brien were shot and killed as they returned from Patrolman James Edward Doyle's funeral who had been killed four days earlier. Patrolmen Richard James O'Brien and William Fahey were not regular partners. O'Brien's regular partner was off sick and Fahey's was filling in on a desk job for a furloughed policeman.
Officer O'Brien was waked at Blake-Lamb Funeral Home located at 3737 West 79th Street, his funeral mass was held at St. Denis Catholic Church located at 8301 South St. Louis Avenue and he was laid to rest on February 12, 1982 in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Alsip, Illinois.
Patrolman Richard James O'Brien, born October 20, 1948, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on March 19, 1973. He earned 6 Honorable Mentions and numerous Complimentary Letters during his career.
Officer O'Brien was a member of the Fraternal Order of Police. He was survived by his mother, LaVern E. (nee Klein) and siblings: Jack, Michael, Susan Contos and Nancy Spinazolla. He was preceded in death by his late father, John Joseph O'Brien, who was a Chicago Police Sergeant.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department RD #D044364.
On October 20, 1982, Officer O'Brien's star was retired by Superintendent Richard Brzeczek and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Officer O'Brien's Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.
On October 20, 1982, In memory of his sacrifice the Chicago Transit Authority's Harlem Avenue Rapid Transit Station, located in 5550 N Harlem Avenue was dedicated in Officer O'Brien's honor. A dedication plaque was erected to be permanently displayed. The ceremony was held on what would have been O'Brien's 34th birthday. Attending the ceremony were members of O'Brien's family.
Detective Jeremiah E. O’Connell
Detective Jeremiah E. O'Connell, Star #1977, aged 38 years, was a 7 year, 8 month, 3 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 8th District - South Chicago, detailed to Detective Division - Ford Squad 3-C.
On July 29, 1928, at 12:05 a.m., Detective O'Connell was on patrol with his partners, Detectives Howard J. Doyle, John Ryan and Edward Tussy. They were driving in a Detective Bureau squad car in charge of Detective Doyle when a citizen approached them. The citizen reported that a known armed robber was nearby. The officers then followed the citizen to an alley near 33rd and LaSalle Streets. Upon arrival they observed Aaron Woodworth, alias Jack Whitaker, and an accomplice, Joe Harris, in the process of robbing Minister George Van Pertioloy, of Mount Vernon Baptist Church, in front of 3401 South LaSalle Street. As Officer O'Connell and his partner attempted to arrest Woodworth, a shootout ensued. Woodsworth exchanged gunfire with the officers. Both officers were struck in the gunfire as well as Minister Van Pertioloy, who got caught in the crossfire. Van Pertioloy collapsed to the sidewalk and died on scene. Officer O'Connell was mortally wounded. Woodward also wounded Patrolman Howard Doyle before he himself was wounded and apprehended by responding officers. Officers also arrested Joe Harris as well. Officer O'Connell was rushed to Lakeside Hospital where he lingered for one day before dying on July 30, 1928.
On September 25, 1928, Woodward was held to the Grand Jury by the Coroner on two charges of murder and indicted. On September 26, 1928, Joe Harris, was discharged by Judge Padden. On March 20, 1929, Woodward was sentenced to death in the electric chair on June 14, 1929 by Judge Robert E. Gentzel. Woodward appealed his conviction and on January 7, 1930 the Supreme Court affirmed his conviction and the sentence was upheld. On April 11, 1930, Woodward was executed in the electric chair at Cook County Jail.
Detective O'Connell was waked at his residence located at 10306 South Avenue L, his funeral mass was held at St. Francis De Sales Church located at 10201 South Ewing Avenue and he was laid to rest on August 2, 1928 in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Alsip, Illinois.
Detective Jeremiah E. O'Connell, born January 3, 1890, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on November 27, 1920. He earned 17 Credible Mentions and 6 Extra Compensations for Meritorious Conduct totaling $900.00 during his career.
Detective O'Connell was a member of the Policemen's Post of the American Legion, the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association and the Bishop Kettler St. Rita’s Council No. 2034 Knights of Columbus. He was survived by his wife, Irene; children: Edward, Irene, James, Jerome and Nellie; mother, Catherine (nee Rahilly) and siblings: Bessie, Charles, Daniel, Frank, Kathleen, May, Thomas, Jr., Timothy and William.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #10717 and Case #11277.
In December of 1923 the Ford Squad was assigned to the Detective Division and detailed to patrol two districts. The cars were manned by four men in plainclothes with two shotguns. They patrolled 24 hours a day in eight hour shifts.
Patrolman John O’Connell
Patrolman John O'Connell, Star # Unknown, aged 33 years, was a 5 year, 7 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 9, 21st Precinct - Maxwell
On April 16, 1911, Officer O'Connell was on duty and working with his partner, Patrolman Michael Sheehan. While on patrol they observed a group of approximately thirty Italians at Taylor and Halsted Streets. The group was causing a disturbance and the officers ordered it to disperse. The group refused and became riotous, threatening the officers as they went across the street to call for reinforcements. While at the patrol box, the crowd became violent and began to attack Officer O’Connell. Officer Sheehan came to his partners aid and both officers sustained multiple lacerations in the encounter. Officer O’Connell sustained lacerations and stab wounds to the face and neck. Officer Sheehan sustained lacerations to his arms and hands. Officer O’Connell was taken to Cook County Hospital and was treated. However, Officer O'Connell died on November 19, 1911 due to complications from the injuries he sustained. Officer Sheehan was treated for his wounds and made a full recovery.
The Coroner recommended apprehension of the slayers. On April 1, 1912, Frank Canesi was arrested in connection with the murder. On August 12, 1912, the case against Canesi was stricken off the record by Judge Kersten.
Officer O'Connell was waked at his residence located at 1237 West 13th Street, his funeral mass was held in Requiem at Holy Family Church located at 1019 South May Street and he was laid to rest on November 22, 1911 in Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery, 2755 West 111th Street, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman John O'Connell, born June 14, 1878, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on March 23, 1906.
Officer O'Connell was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association. He was survived by his wife, Mamie; children: Ellen, John, Lillian, Margaret and Mary and siblings: James, Joseph (CPD), Margaret, Mrs. Edward Cogan, Nellie, Sarah and Timothy.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #4649.
Further narrative of incident details unavailable. The officer’s homicide record is held in the Illinois State Archives: Chicago Police Department Homicide Record Index, Volume 2, page 128A. Other person involved: Frank Canesi, it is unknown the role Canesi played in the officer’s death. The record is held in storage at the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago.
On August 10, 1886, an officer by the same name, who was at the Haymarket tragedy, gave testimony at the Illinois vs. August Spies et al. trial. It is unknown if this officer was the same officer killed.
Desk Sergeant Timothy S. O’Connell
Desk Sergeant Timothy S. O'Connell, Star #266, aged 31 years, was a 17 year, 11 month, 17 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 5, 12th Precinct - Jefferson Avenue Station.
On April 29, 1900, at 10:30 p.m., Sergeant O'Connell was off duty in plain clothes and had just finished visiting friends and relatives of his wife. As he was walking to his car an armed robber, George Henchik confronted him on the 18th Street Viaduct. As Sergeant O'Connell drew his service revolver, Henchik fired a shot and fled. Two night watchmen, John Surran and Joseph O’Connor, for the Pennsylvania Railway Company were standing underneath the viaduct near the East approach at Canal Street when they heard the gunfire directly above them. The watchmen then heard a heavy thud and the shuffling of retreating feet. They both split up and ran to investigate, one coming from the east approach and the other the west approach. When they arrived they discovered Sergeant O’Connell lying dead face down on the viaduct approximately fifty feet from the east approach and no one else in sight. Sergeant O’Connell had sustained a gunshot to his left breast and was found with his revolver drawn unfired at his side. He was also clinching, in his left hand, a battered black derby hat. Officer was transported by patrol wagon to the Canalport Avenue Station where he was placed in Lieutenant Haines private office. He was later removed and taken to Peter Smith’s undertaking rooms located at 165 West 18th Street (present day 43 West 18th Street).
A bridge tender, Christ Brinkman, of the 18th Street bridge also heard the gunfire as well as saw the muzzle flash of the gun. Brinkman was unable to see which way the assailant fled. The only clew was the hat. The hat was so old that there were no means to identify its maker but was once a fairly good quality, and was about a 7 in size. Patrolmen Conway and Homer arrested James Santa, 18, of 112 West 18th Street (present day 564 West 18th Street), two hours after the shooting at 18th and Jefferson Streets. Santa was stopped due to his suspicious appearance, without a hat, and his strange actions led to his arrest. He was brought to the station for questioning. His answers were contradictory in relation to his movements that night, but he continued to protest that he knew nothing about a murder.
Also arrested were John Bennett, Joseph Cronin, Daniel Galvan and Austin Keating. None of the four men were charged with murder, but were being held because investigators believed they could provide information on Santa’s whereabouts. At 2:30 a.m. the same night, Peter M. McLean was arrested at 22nd and Union Streets. He was found to be carrying a revolver, which was recently fired once. He was also wearing a hat, which was said to be too small for him.Further investigation led investigators to believe that three men attempted to rob Sergeant O’Connell and when he drew his service revolver, two of the men fled. It was believed the third man, George Henchik, remained drawing his own revolver and fired striking Sergeant O’Connell in his chest. Henchik was well known to police in the precinct as a leader of thieves. On May 5, 1900, George Henchik was arrested and held to the Grand Jury by the Coroner. He was arrested in possession of a revolver and denied any knowledge of the attempted robbery and murder. On September 18, 1900, he was acquitted by a jury in Judge Holdom's room.
Sergeant O'Connell was laid to rest in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Desk Sergeant Timothy S. O'Connell, born in 1869, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on May 12, 1882. In 1897, he was promoted to Desk Sergeant.
Sergeant O'Connell was survived by his wife and three children.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #1822.
Ironically, Sergeant O'Connell's star number was reissued after his death to Sergeant Walter J. Riley, who was also killed in the Line of Duty on October 26, 1926.
Patrolman James “Jimmy” Michael O’Conner
Patrolman James "Jimmy" Michael O'Connor, Star #4573, aged 27 years, was a 1 year, 3 month, 16 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, and was assigned to the 23rd District - Town Hall.
On September 16, 1995, at 2:55 a.m., Officer O'Connor was off duty outside of El Jardin restaurant located at 3335 North Clark Street. He was seated in his car speaking to Allison Bednarz. age 29, of 6857 North Northwest Highway, who was standing beside his car. A 1992 Toyota Corolla drove by and the passenger grabbed the woman's purse and then fled. The car was being driven by Franklin Drew Matthews, age 22, of 380 South Fernwood Drive, Bolingbrook, Illinois, who was believed to have committed previous robberies with his passenger, Raymond Ervin Thomas, age 14, of 112 Somerset Lane, Bolingbrook, Illinois. Officer O'Connor pursued the suspect vehicle and blocked its path with his 1995 GMC Jimmy at 4120 North Marine Drive. As the officer approached the offender's vehicle, shots rang out and O'Connor was struck twice, once in the top right shoulder and once in the chest. Despite his injuries, he was able to return fire, striking Matthews four times. Matthews attempted to flee by striking Officer O'Connor's truck and fleeing northbound on Marine Drive. Matthews would then strike a bus stop sign at 4170 North Marine Drive, then a parked car at 629 West Gordon Terrace, before crashing and coming to rest against a fire hydrant at 630 West Gordon Terrace. Officer O'Connor succumbed to his wounds at the scene and was pronounced dead by Cook County Medical Examiner Investigator Saunders at 4:20 a.m. on September 16, 1995. Matthews died in his vehicle as a result of his gunshots wounds and was pronounced dead by Cook County Medical Examiner Investigator Saunders at 5:50 a.m. on September 16, 1995.
Thomas was arrested at 3:00 a.m. at 726 West Buena Circle. He was charged with first degree murder and robbery. Thomas was tried in Cook County Juvenile Court.
Officer O'Connor was waked at Colombian Chapels located at 6901 West Belmont Avenue, his funeral mass was held in Our Lady Mother of the Church located at 8747 West Lawrence Avenue and he was entombed on September 20, 1995 in All Saints Catholic Cemetery and Mausoleum, 700 North River Road, Des Plaines, Illinois.
Patrolman James "Jimmy" Michael O'Connor, born July 27, 1968, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on May 31, 1994 and was in Recruit Class 94-3 at the Jackson Street Police Academy.
Officer O'Connor served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1990 thru 1994 and was Honorably Discharged. He was also a member of the Fraternal Order of Police. He was survived by his parents: Thomas and Louise (nee Rossdeutcher) and siblings: Daniel, Thomas and Timothy.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department RD #Z435664 Homicide Case Report, Z435766 Theft Case Report and Z875314 Traffic Crash Report.
On February 6, 1996, Officer O'Connor's star was retired by Superintendent Matt L. Rodriguez and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Officer O'Connor's Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.
Lieutenant James E. O’Connor Sr.
Lieutenant James E. O'Connor, Sr., Star #434, aged 62 years, was a 36 year, 11 month, 3 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 5th District - Kensington.
On January 28, 1970, at 12:10 a.m., Lieutenant O'Connor and Patrolman Raymond Calabrese were visiting a retired policeman at Imperial Credit Company located at 11048 South Michigan Avenue, a South Side loan office where he now worked. While in a backroom an armed robber, Michael Miller, age 20, of 7262 West 21st Street, entered the establishment. Miller, attempting to rob the business, had a gun in one hand and the other hand covered his face for a disguise. Lieutenant O'Connor had a clear shot at the 20-year-old gunman but instead lunged at him attempting to disarm him and spare his life. In the struggle, Miller’s gun discharged and the bullet struck the lieutenant in the head mortally wounding him. Miller then fled on foot.
Two detectives were in the neighborhood on an investigation and saw the struggle from across the street from inside a restaurant. Detectives John L. Sullivan and Peter Valesares, across the street using a payphone, saw the muzzle flash of the gun. The detectives and Officer Calabrese gave chase. They cornered Miller in a parking lot located at 111th and State Streets. A gun battle ensued and Miller was taken into custody. A .38 caliber revolver with two empty chambers was recovered. Miller’s accomplice, Ronald Johnson, age 33, of 526 Lincoln Avenue, Calumet City, Illinois, who had been waiting in the getaway car near the credit company, was also arrested. Lieutenant O'Connor was transported to Roseland Community Hospital by beat 670 where he was pronounced dead by Dr. Esau at 2:00 p.m. on January 28, 1970.
During questioning Michael Miller confessed to the murder of Lieutenant O'Connor. Both Miller and Johnson were charged with murder. On March 20, 1970, Johnson was found hanged in his cell at Cook County Jail. Following his accomplices suicide, Miller pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 50 to 100 years in prison. Miller was also sentenced to 14 years in prison for attempted armed robbery.
Lieutenant O'Connor was waked at Sheehy Funeral Home located at 8343 South Ashland Avenue, his funeral mass was held at St. John Fisher Church located at 10234 South Washtenaw Avenue and he was laid to rest on January 31, 1970 in Holy Sephulchre Cemetery, 6001 West 111th Street, Worth, Illinois.
Lieutenant James E. O'Connor, Sr., born August 28, 1907, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on February 25, 1933. In April, 1965, he was cited by Deputy Superintendent of Inspectional Services Joseph Morris for his consistent good work in the Division. Among his other citations was a letter of commendation in April, 1961 from former States Attorney Daniel P. Ward for an excellent investigation of a case. In September, 1947, he was promoted to Sergeant. On August 1, 1954, he was promoted to Lieutenant. Ironically, at the time of his death, Lieutenant O'Connor was planning to retire in August.
Lieutenant O'Connor served in the U.S. Navy, was a veteran of World War II and was Honorably Discharged. He was also a member of the Chicago Police Lieutenant’s Association and the St. Jude Police League. Lieutenant O'Connor was survived by his wife, Theresa (nee Du Bois), age 57; children: James E., Jr., Kathleen, Mary Theresa Ormsby, Patricia and Timothy J. and siblings: Edward (CPD), Rosemary (CPD) and John J. (CPD).
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department RD #J034265.
Patrolman Joseph A. O’Connor
Patrolman Joseph A. O'Connor, Star #3704, aged 33 years, was an 8 year, 0 month, 6 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, unit of assigned to District 1, 1st Precinct - Central Detail.
On October 30, 1917, at 11:30 p.m., Officer O'Connor was off duty and in the company of Miss Alma Scanlon of 5052 West Monroe Street. Earlier in the evening a women, claiming to be Mrs. O’Connor, called the 1st Precinct station and informed them that her husband was ill and wouldn’t be reporting for duty. The two were walking down the street and in front of the Galt Hotel on the northwest corner of Market Street (present day Wacker Drive) and Madison Street encountered W. M. Osborn, alias Olson. Osborn had directed an insulting remark at Miss Scanlon. Officer O’Connor took exception and intervened, attempting to arrest Osborn who precipitated the altercation. As Officer O'Connor placed Osborn under arrest he pulled out a revolver and fired. Officer O’Connor was hit in the chest just under his heart and collapsed to the ground. As Osborn attempted to flee, Officer O’Connor drew his gun and returned fire as he lay on the ground. Osborn was struck three times in the legs and collapsed to the ground as he fled. Several apprentice seamen from the Great Lakes Station also witnessed the shooting. One of them was, A. J. Gritten, who also sustained a non-life threatening gunshot wound in the neck. Officer O’Connor was rushed to St. Luke Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds four days later on November 4, 1917. Osborn was taken to Iroquois Memorial Hospital where he was treated and then transferred to the Bridewell Hospital. Osborn died from his wounds four days later on November 4, 1917, only a few hours before Officer O’Connor.
Miss Scanlon was taken to the station for a statement following the shooting. While in the hospital, Officer O’Connor’s family and friends rallied around him. They attempted to convince him that he would survive, but he would not entertain the idea. He told them, “That’s all right boys; don’t kid me i’ll be in Mount Carmel in a few days." His wife, Mary, was by his bedside when he died and publicly forgave him for being in the company of another woman at the time of the shooting.
Officer O’Connor was waked at his residence located at 3701 West Ohio Street, his funeral mass was held at Our Lady of Angels Catholic Church located at 3808 West Iowa Street and he was laid to rest on November 6, 1917 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman Joseph A. O'Connor, born December 13, 1883, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 29, 1909.
Officer O’Connor was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association and Commodore Harry Council No. 1118 Knights of Columbus. He was survived by his wife, Mary and siblings: Anastasia Walsh, Jeremiah J., John J., L. P. Byrne and Thomas.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #4677.
Patrolman Timothy J. O’Connor
Patrolman Timothy J. O'Connor, Star #2079, aged 48 years, was a 14 year, 8 month, 18 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 11 - Englewood.
On December 18, 1920, at 11:35 p.m., Officer O'Connor was assigned to guard the delivery trucks for the Marshall Field & Company at their barns located at 7005 South Wentworth Avenue. Without warning six armed men rushed the garage and took $5,000.00. As the bandits got into their getaway car, Officer O’Connor leapt out and opened fire. A fusillade of bullets was returned from the bandit’s car. O'Connor was struck three times and mortally wounded. He was taken to St. Bernard Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries 2 days later on December 20, 1920.
On December 29, 1920, Ed Kaufman and Dominic Monaco were arrested and held as being part of the robbery team. On January 27, 1921, the Coroner released them. It is unknown whether the other assailants were ever identified.
Officer O'Connor was waked at his residence located at 7833 South Dante Avenue, his funeral mass was held at St. Laurence Catholic Church located at 7140 South Dorchester Avenue and he was laid to rest on December 23, 1920 in Mount Olivet Catholic Cemetery, 2755 West 111th Street, Chicago, Illinois.
Patrolman Timothy J. O'Connor, born Mar 7, 1872, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on April 2, 1906. He earned 1 Credible Mention during his career.
Officer O'Connor was survived by his wife, Sarah A. and children: Mrs. Joseph M. Wogan, Marie C., Sarah A. and William H.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #4699.
Patrolman William Allen O’Connor
Patrolman William Allen O'Connor, Star #3470, aged 38 years, was a 7 year, 6 month, 23 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 15th District - Englewood.
On June 3, 1928, at 11:18 p.m., Officer O'Connor had just finished his shift and, while off duty, was walking home when a patron of Harold Grady’s “soft drink” parlor located at 7135 South Halsted Street approached him. The patron had managed to escape from the soft drink parlor and reported a robbery in progress to the officer. He went on to say that the robbers had lined all of the patrons up and gone down the line robbing each of them. While the robbers were in the process of robbing Harold Grady of $70.00, he snuck out to get help. Officer O’Connor followed the patron back to the soft drink parlor and just as he was about to enter with his pistol drawn, the robbers made their exit.
The robbers, Edward Demker, John Dempsey and Alfred Malette, were responsible for a series of robberies on the Southside that evening when the officer encountered them. One of the robbers struck the officer on the head with the butt of his gun and a struggle ensued between the two. During the struggle, the robber fired his gun striking Officer O'Connor in the head. The robber then broke free and ran off with his accomplices. Amazingly, while shot in the head, Officer O'Connor gave chase exchanging gunfire with the robbers. At 7143 South Halsted Street, Officer O'Connor was struck again, mortally wounded, and he collapsed to the sidewalk. Patrolman O'Connor was taken to Englewood Hospital where he died at 5:00 a.m. the next day on June 4, 1928.
In an ironic turn of events, Officer O’Connor was supposed to be on furlough June 1, 1928, but was asked to delay it so he could be available to work the upcoming elections on June 4, 1928.
On June 14, 1928, Edward Demker, John Dempsey and Alfred Malette were all apprehended, confessed to the crime and booked for murder. After being fully identified and signing their confessions they were turned over to the Sheriff. All three were found to be responsible for over two dozen other robberies. On August 7, 1928, Dempsey and Domker were each sentenced to 50 years and Malette to 20 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet, by Judge David. On October 26, 1928, Dempsey, the actual killer; escaped from Judge John J. Sullivan's court room, having been brought there to testify on behalf of two men on trial for robbery. On October 10, 1931, Dempsey was captured in Las Vegas, Nevada and extradited back to the prison by Illinois Department of Correction Authorities.
Officer O'Connor was waked at his residence located at 914 West 68th Street, his funeral mass was held at St. Brendan Catholic Church located at 6714 South Racine Avenue and he was laid to rest on June 7, 1928 in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Patrolman William Allen O'Connor, born April 20, 1890, received a Temporary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on August 8, 1919 prior to his Probationary Appointment to the Department on November 12, 1920. He earned 6 Credible Mentions and 2 Extra Compensations for Meritorious Conduct totaling $300.00 during his career.
Officer O'Connor served in the Armed Forces, was a veteran of World War I and was Honorably Discharged. He served 18 months in France during the war. Officer O'Connor was also a member of the Chicago Police Post No. 207 American Legion and the Policemen's Benevolent and Protective Association. He was survived by his wife, Clara (nee Wellert); mother, Margaret Sullivan and siblings: Charles (CPD), Eugene (CPD), George (CPD), Grace Hoff, Mary J. Carr and Joseph (CPD).
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #10710.
Patrolman Edward M. J. O’Donnell Sr.
Patrolman Edward M. J. O'Donnell, Sr., Star #3363, aged 35 years, was a 12 year, 2 month, 23 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 2nd District - South Clark.
On June 9, 1931, Officer O'Donnell was detailed to the Paul Schultz Baking Company located at 25 North Green Street. He was to escort Lillian Rice, an assistant cashier, to the Mid City Trust and Savings Bank, located at Madison and Halsted Streets, in order to make a bank deposit. The cashier was carrying a brief case containing cash and checks amounting to $2,600.00. On the corner of Green and Madison Streets, they were accosted by two bandits, one of whom grabbed for the brief case and the other covered Officer O'Donnell. Officer O'Donnell attempted to thwart the robbery, and while attempting to draw his weapon he was shot and fell to the ground mortally wounded. A citizen, Frank Rogers, a war veteran and sporting goods salesman who was parked in a nearby auto, heard the gunfire and ran to the officer's side. It was at this time the bandits fled on foot toward Washington Boulevard.
Rogers grabbed the officer's gun and pursued the two bandits. Rogers caught up to them as they hid under a car in the rear of 32 North Halsted Street and yelled “Come out from under there and come out with your hands up.” He was in command of the situation when West Park Patrolman P. J. Dorgan and Patrolman Ernest Schaefer of the 26th District, arrived on the scene. The two bandits, Mike Trotta, age 25, of 924 North Ashland Avenue and Nick Floridia, age 29, of 1933 West Taylor Street were captured. As the men were placed in custody and searched, the murder weapon was nowhere to be found. Police searched the area and their weapons were recovered from the roof of a nearby barn. The money however was never recovered leading to speculation that a third offender was involved. Officer O'Donnell was taken to Cook County Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries at 2:40 p.m. the same day.
The men were taken to the station for questioning where they confessed to the robbery, shooting and ownership of the recovered guns. Nick Floridia and Mike Trotta pleaded guilty to Officer O'Donnell's murder. On August 6, 1931, Judge Charles A. Williams, presiding over the bench trial, sentenced them each to serve 145 years in the Illinois State Penitentiary at Joliet. In 1959, Nick Floridia’s sentence was commuted by Governor Stratton for good behavior and reduced to 60 years in prison. He became eligible for parole in 1961 and was released from prison the same year, after serving 30 years of his prison sentence. Mike Trotta's sentenced was reduced to 60 years in prison after he participated in Malaria experiments during World War II.
Officer O'Donnell was waked at his residence located at 4907 West Fulton Street, his funeral mass was held at St. Thomas Aquinas Church located at 5112 West Washington Boulevard and he was laid to rest on June 12 1931 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman Edward M. J. O'Donnell, Sr., born October 22, 1895, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on April 16, 1919. He earned 1 Credible Mention during his career.
Officer O'Donnell served in the Armed Forces. He was also a member of Chicago Police Post No. 207 American Legion and the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association. Officer O'Donnell was survived by his wife, Elsie; children: Edward and Patricia and siblings: Arthur, Joseph and William.
Patrolman John J. O’Donnell
Patrolman John J. O'Donnell, Star #3590, aged 33 years, was a 3 year, 11 month, 16 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 31st District - Cragin.
On August 9, 1942, at approximatemately 3:15 a.m., Officer O'Donnell was working with Patrolman John Ryan at the scene of a hit and run traffic crash at the intersection of Diversey and Kilbourn Avenues. The officers were loading two pedestrians, Albert Cordingley, age 45, of 4518 Parket Avenue and James Young, age 46, of 910 West Lawrence Avenue into a police ambulance. An intoxicated motorist, George Peterson, age 43, of 2844 North Mango Avenue, was speeding and did not see the officers in time to stop. Peterson slammed into the back of the ambulance crushing Officer O’Donnell's left leg between the car and the ambulance. Officer O’Donnell was transported to a local hospital and died shortly thereafter from shock and hemorrhage due to the crushing injury. Cordingley was taken to Belmont Hospital where he died from injuries sustained in the hit and run traffic crash.
George Peterson was arrested on scene and later charged with manslaughter.
Officer O’Donnell was waked at a funeral home located at 5350 West North Avenue, his funeral mass was held at St. John Bosco Catholic Church located at 2250 North McVicker Avenue and he was laid to rest on August 12, 1942 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road #4, Hillside, Illinois.
Patrolman John J. O'Donnell, born August 28, 1908, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on September 24, 1938.
Officer O’Donnell was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association. He was survived by his wife, Alice (nee Nottoli); daughter, Denise Marie, age 14 months; mother Catherine (nee O'Malley) and siblings: Alice Sullivan, Anna Castans, Emmett, Mary Margaret and Veronica Brezina.
On November 14, 2006, Officer O'Donnell's star was retired by Superintendent Philip J. Cline and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 3510 South Michigan Avenue.
Patrolman Patrick Edward O’Malley
Patrolman Patrick Edward O'Malley, Star #1346, aged 31 years, was a 5 year, 8 month, 7 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 39th District - North Damen.
On August 21, 1938, Officer O'Malley was off duty and in civilian clothes at Neely's Cocktail Lounge at 2405 North Clark Street. The lounge was closed at the time and the front door locked. Officer O'Malley was inside waiting for a friend as he conversed with the owner, William Neely, Neely’s wife and their friend. Four armed offenders, George Hamer, Howard Poe, age 25, Ossie Townsend and Lucius “Red Light” Webb, entered through the back door and announce a robbery. Officer O'Malley moved away from Mrs. Neely and drew his revolver and opened fire on the robbers. The robbers returned fire, Townsend was struck and fell to the floor dying at the scene. Seeing this, the remaining three robbers fled the scene to a waiting vehicle with a fifth bandit, Henry “W. Nash” Napue, behind the wheel.
Patrolman Walter Frank was passing the lounge when he heard the gunfire and rushed to investigate. He found the front door locked and then made his way to the rear at the instruction of those inside. Officer Frank observed the three bandits getting into the car. As he drew his weapon one of the bandits fired at him and he returned fire. Firing three shots before the bandits sped away. Officer Frank then went inside the lounge and discovered Officer O’Malley bleeding. Officer O’Malley was struck in the chest, stomach and shoulder. Additional Officers arrived on scene and Officer O’Malley was taken to Chicago Hospital where he succumbed to his wounds nine days later on the morning of August 30, 1938.
Shortly after being taken to the hospital, a man with a gunshot wound was dropped off at a nearby doctor’s office. Through further investigation, it was learned that the man, George Hamer, was one of the shooters involved in the robbery and he was placed in custody. It wasn’t clear if Officer O’Malley or Frank had wounded the man in the gunfight. During question, Hamer confessed his part in the crime and named his accomplices.
Howard Poe and Lucius “Red Light” Webb were eventually apprehended. Poe stood trial and was found guilty and sentenced to death on August 1, 1938. On April 19, 1940, at 12:03 a.m., he was executed in the electric chair at Cook County Jail being pronounced dead at 12:10 a.m. Hamar stood trial and was found guilty and sentenced to 199 years. Hamer requested a new trial and was denied by Chief Justice Harold G. Ward on October 25, 1946. Webb stood trial and was found guilty and sentenced to 199 years. Webb was later released by Governor Stratton when he reduced his sentence to 57 years. Napue stood trial and was found guilty. Napue also requested a new trial and was granted one. The district attorney said there was not enough evidence to prosecute him and on March 8, 1960 he was released.
Officer O’Malley was waked at his residence located at 418 West Arlington Place, his funeral mass was held at St. Clement Catholic Church located at 642 West Deming Place and he was laid to rest on September 2, 1938 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.Patrolman Patrick Edward O'Malley, born April 6, 1907, received his Probationary
Appointment to the Department on December 23, 1932. He earned 1 Credible Mention during his career.
Officer O’Malley was a member of the Chicago Policemen's Benevolent & Welfare Association. He was survived by his parents: Anna F. (nee Flannigan) and John J.; siblings: Anne, Joseph, Mary Glascott, Rita, Thomas and William (CPD).
Probationary Patrolman William J. O’Malley
Probationary Patrolman William J. O'Malley, Star #2, aged 24 years, was a 6 month, 22 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to District 20 - Warren.
On December 30, 1922, at 12:45 a.m., Officer O'Malley was on duty and working with his partners, Patrolmen Simon R. Kennedy and W. M. Murphy. They were at a patrol box, in the process of reporting in to the station at the end of their shift, when they received a report of a shooting. The officers went to investigate and began responding to Jackson Boulevard and Paulina Street. While en route they observed a man, John Reiss, loitering on the corner of Hermitage Avenue and Van Buren Street. After questioning him, Officer O’Malley attempted to place Reiss into custody for the shooting. Reiss resisted, produced a gun, and fired hoping to cause enough confusion to make good his escape. The bullet he fired struck Officer O’Malley’s police star before it entered his chest. Officer Kennedy drew his service revolver and fired upon Reiss, incapacitating him. Officer O’Malley was rushed to Cook County Hospital where he died shortly after arriving. Reiss was taken to the Bridewell Hospital where he died later that night.
The shooting the officers were responding to began when John Reiss shot a young woman, Minnie Finkelstein, at Adams and Paulina Streets. Miss Finkelstein was walking home with her brother, Isadore and friends, Miss Bessie Klass and Leo Kaufman. They had just attended a high school dance when they encountered Reiss. Reiss was with two other boys when he made unwanted advances toward the girl. When she refused to have anything to do with him, Reiss shot her in the hip. When Miss Bessie Klass attempted to aid her, the two young boys with Reiss fled the scene. It is not known what happened to the two boys as the police did not see them when they encountered Reiss.
Officer O'Malley was waked at his residence located at 417 South Homan Avenue, his funeral mass was held at Our Lady of Sorrows Basilica located at 3121 West Jackson Boulevard and he was laid to rest on January 2, 1923 in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Probationary Patrolman William J. O'Malley, born December 25, 1898, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on June 8, 1922. He earned 2 Credible Mentions during his career.
Officer O'Malley was a member of Americus Council No. 1279 Knights of Columbus. He was survived by his parents: Mary (nee O’Brien) and William and siblings: Catherine, Margaret, Richard and Sadie.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #7461.
Patrolman Patrick O’Meara
Patrolman Patrick O'Meara, Star #94, aged 38 years, was a 3 year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 1st Precinct - South Branch Street Station.
On August 5, 1872, at 12:30 a.m., Officer O'Meara and his partner, Patrolman James Scanlon, were assigned to execute an arrest warrant for Christopher Rafferty who was wanted for battery. While canvassing the taverns in the neighborhood, they were able to locate Rafferty sitting inside O'Brien's Saloon located at No. 1266 or 1466 South Halsted Street (present day 1266 or 1466 South Halsted Street) near Douglas Place (present day 35th Street). Officer O'Meara guarded the front door to prevent Rafferty's escape, while Officer Scanlon served the warrant. Officer Scanlon approached Rafferty who was sitting at a table in the back of the room. As Scanlon approached Rafferty said to Officer O'Meara "will you have a cigar?" At the same time Rafferty took one from his pant pocket. O'Meara replied that he did not wish one just then. Officer Scanlon then told Rafferty that he had a warrant for him. Rafferty asked, "What is it for?" Scanlon replied "I don't know" and Rafferty then said "read it to me." Scanlon read the warrant to Rafferty and Rafferty then said, "Well, if I must go, I must. You will let me get my coat, won't you?" Scanlon replied "certainly" and started toward the door. After advancing a few feet, Rafferty, pulled a large navy revolver from his bootleg, and aimed at Officer O'Meara. O'Meara, seeing this, said, "don't shoot." But before O'Meara could get the words out, Rafferty had pulled the trigger and O'Meara fell to the floor shot in the left breast. Rafferty then turned towards Officer Scanlon and fired one shot at him. Scanlon was able to duck behind the end of the counter and the shot went through his coat. There were four other patrons in the tavern at the time of the shooting. Hearing the commotion the patrons jumped up and fled for the door to reach safety. Rafferty was knocked down to the floor, either by the patrons running out or he had fallen by himself. Officer Scanlon seeing Rafferty prostrate on the floor rushed him as Rafferty took aim again and attempted to fire as Officer Scanlon grabbed the gun. The bullet would have certainly struck Scanlon in the head as he was in close quarters with it as Rafferty pulled the trigger, but Scanlon's little finger was in the way and the hammer struck it. The two men struggled on the floor and Officer Scanlon continually hit Rafferty in the head with his Billy club while holding Rafferty's hand and gun down with his other hand. Rafferty was able to break free and fled out the front door of the tavern. Scanlon pursued, but as he exited the tavern he tripped over some beer kegs lying on the sidewalk and fell into a ditch. When Scanlon regained his foothold Rafferty had disappeared.
Officer Scanlon yelled for help the entire time he fought with Rafferty, but the tavern patrons just watched as they were of the same ilk as Rafferty. Scanlon went back into the tavern to find Officer O'Meara still clinging to life. A physician was summoned, but Officer O'Meara expired prior to his arrival. Officer O'Meara was removed to No. 98 Deering Street (present day 238 South Loomis Street) where he had resided with his wife and seven children.
On August 5, 1872, Detectives received a telegraphic notification from a well posted individual residing in a small town immediately outside the southwestern city limits, informing them that Rafferty had passed through there on foot in the morning. Detectives Simmons and Elliot were instructed to take two men with them and board the $30.00 Joliet accommodation train. They selected Sergeant Fitzpatrick and Officer Mahoney from the Harrison Street Station. Ex-Superintendent Kennedy also accompanied the men. The men got off the train in Willow Springs and began their manhunt. The men split into three groups and Rafferty was located walking just off the main road by Office Mahoney and a hired wagon man. Rafferty was taken into custody and willingly got into the wagon and was transported back to the city.
On September 4, 1872, Christopher Rafferty was indicted by the Grand Jury for murder. At his arraignment, Rafferty pleaded not guilty and his attorney requested a change of venue, which was granted and moved to Lake County, Waukegan, Illinois. On September 10, 1872, Rafferty was found guilty of first-degree murder and recommended to hang until dead. On October 14, 1872, Rafferty was sentenced to hang on October 4, 1872 by Judge Tree. Rafferty appealed and was granted a second trial and was again convicted and sentenced to hang on March 7, 1873. Rafferty once again appealed to the Illinois Supreme court and was granted a third trial and was again convicted and sentenced to hang. On February 27, 1874, Rafferty was hanged for Patrolman O'Meara's murder in Waukegan, Illinois.
Officer O'Meara was laid to rest in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois.
Patrolman Patrick O'Meara, born in 1834, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department in 1869.
Officer O'Meara was survived by his wife, Julia and children: James, age 3, John, age 11, Katherine, age 9, Thomas, age 4 and William, age 5.
Chicago Police Department homicide file not found for this incident.
On December 18, 1957, Officer O'Meara's star was retired by Commissioner Timothy J. O'Connor and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the 4th floor Office of the Superintendent at Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. The Honored Star Case was later relocated to the lobby of Chicago Police Headquarters, 1121 South State Street. In 2000, Chicago Police Headquarters moved to a new facility at 3510 South Michigan Avenue, Officer O'Meara's Star was re-encased in the new headquarters building lobby.
Detective Sergeant Patrick Joseph O’Neill
Detective Sergeant Patrick Joseph O'Neill, Star #2963, aged 42 years, was a 14 year, 4 month, 23 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the Detective Bureau.
On March 23, 1921, at 10:00 p.m., Detective Sergeant O'Neill was on duty and in charge of a squad of five Detective Sergeants, William Carter, Edward Halpin, Tom McShane, William Penn and Joseph Ronan. Acting on a tip they went to an apartment building located at 6415 South Washtenaw Avenue. They had a tip that they could find Thomas “Terrible Tommy” O'Connor who was wanted on a bond forfeiture warrant for the murder of his friend Jimmy Cherin, at the home of William Foley. Cherin’s body had been found over a year earlier in an abandoned auto at 79th Street and State Road in Stickney, Illinois. Foley was O’Connor’s brother-in-law who also owned the building. When the detectives arrived they surrounded the building as they prepared to ask Foley if O’Connor was in the residence. Sergeant O’Neill was stationed in the rear of the building as one of the other detective sergeants knocked on the front door. William Foley and O'Connor’s sister answered the door allowing O’Connor to slip out the back. Seconds after the knock, O’Connor emerged from the back door and onto the porch in an attempt to escape. Seeing O’Neill waiting for him just below at ground level, O’Connor said, “You dirty shit, I am going to get you anyway. You’ve hounded me long enough,” and opened fire. Sergeant O'Neill suffered five gunshot wounds and collapsed to the ground, as his colleagues looked in horror unable to help. They rushed over to aid O’Neill as O’Connor slipped away making good his escape. O’Neill was rushed to the hospital where he succumbed to his injuries at 11:30 p.m. the same day.
O’Connor fled the scene and flagged down a checker cab at 63rd and Western Avenue. He then drove an indirect route to 63rd Street and Campbell Avenue where he jumped on the running board of an auto driven by W. R. Condon who resided at the Drexel Arms Hotel accompanied by his wife. He ordered the Condon’s to drive him West on 63rd Street at gunpoint. At 63rd Street and 72nd Avenue he forced Mrs. Condon out of the car. He then ordered Mr. Condon to drive northbound on 72nd Avenue through the Township of Stickney. They crossed the Desplaines River in the Village of Lyons, raced through Riverdale, then to the Forest Park station of the Garfield Park elevated line. O’Connor then forced Mr. Condon from the car and drove northbound. It was believed by investigators that he then went to Lake Street where he went West through River Forest and again northbound on either Higgins Road or Milwaukee Avenue.
It was at this time that the largest manhunt in the Chicago Police Department’s history was initiated. Shortly after the shooting General Superintendent Charles C. Fitzmorris ordered the Rifle Squads to the Southside in search of O’Connor. Orders were to stop and search every checker cab. After hearing that O’Connor had hijacked the auto and headed north, he ordered the Rifle Squads to go into the Northwest section of the city with instructions to patrol every road.
William Foley and O'Connor’s sister were arrested. On April 22, 1921, they were indicted on the charge of accessory to murder. On July 30, 1921, O'Connor was finally apprehended in St. Paul, Minnesota as he was attempting to flee to Omaha, Nebraska aboard a Great Western Train. He was extradited back to Chicago and turned over to the Cook County Sheriff. On September 28, 1921, the case against the O'Connor's brother-in-law and sister were nolle prossed. On October 14, 1921, O'Connor was sentenced to death on the gallows to be carried out December 15, 1921. On December 11, 1921, he escaped from the Cook County Jail. He escaped the hangman’s noose and was never recaptured. It was reported that O’Connor later died sometime in 1951 but not confirmed. The Chicago Tribune published annual please for O’Connor to turn himself in all the way into the 1970’s. It is unknown the true fate of O’Connor.
In 1927, O'Connor was responsible for planning a robbery of a pharmacy in Detroit, Michigan. A gunfight took place resulting in the deaths of the two suspects and Officer Stacey C. Mizner of the Detroit Police Department.
Detective Sergeant O'Neill was waked at his residence located at 610 West 54th Place and he was laid to rest on April 13, 1921 in Mount Carmel Cemetery, 1400 South Wolf Road, Hillside, Illinois.
Detective Sergeant Patrick Joseph O'Neill received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on October 30, 1906. He earned 1 Credible Mention during his career.
Detective Sergeant O'Neill was survived by his wife, Anna and three children.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department homicide file, Case #7450.
Sergeant Philip John O’Reilly Sr.
Sergeant Philip John O'Reilly, Sr., Star #2321, aged 41 years, was a 16 year, 3 month, 27 day veteran of the Chicago Police Department, assigned to the 20th District - Lincoln.
On March 16, 2003, at 4:49 a.m., Sergeant O'Reilly was on duty working the first watch 10-99 on beat 2010. Weather conditions were 42 degrees, foggy at 100% humidity and viability was less than one city block. Sergeant O'Reilly was driving westbound on Granville Avenue crossing Western Avenue when his squad car was struck by a northbound 1995 International 4700 flat-bed tow truck. The impact of the collision was at the driver's side rear door of his squad car. The impact caused the squad car to veer off, spin and crash into a snow bank on the Northwest corner of Granville and Western Avenues. Upon impact Sergeant O'Reilly was ejected from his vehicle. His squad car then struck him and he was dragged underneath as the car continued to spin and came to rest on top of the sergeant pinning him against the snow bank. Sergeant O'Reilly was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center by CFD Ambulance #13 where he was pronounced dead by Dr. Kirby at 8:43 a.m. on March 16, 2003. His death was determined to be caused from extensive internal injuries received during the crash.
The tow truck driver, John Gattuso, age 40, of 1955 North Humboldt Boulevard, was cited for driving too fast for weather conditions.
Sergeant O'Reilly was waked at Smith-Corcoran Funeral Home located at 6150 North Cicero Avenue, his funeral mass was held at St. Ignatius Church and he was laid to rest on March 20, 2003 in Calvary Cemetery, 301 Chicago Avenue, Evanston, Illinois. His grave is located in Lot 5, Block 34, Section I, Graves 3 and 4.
Sergeant Philip John O'Reilly, Sr., born December 23, 1961, received his Probationary Appointment to the Chicago Police Department on November 17, 1986 and attended the Jackson Street Police Academy.
Sergeant O'Reilly was a member of the Policemen's Benevolent and Protective Association. He was survived by his wife, Bethany Marie (nee Munson), age 47; children: Elizabeth Claire, age 5, Karl Bernard, age 28, Michael, Philip John, Jr., Therese and Thomas Ryan, age 21; siblings: Denis Hugh, Edward Michael (Linda), Ellen Patricia (Angel) Garcia, James Vincent Leo (Suzanne), Julie Elizabeth (Jose) Castillo, Paul Cornelius (Laurie) and Reverend Gerald Kevin. One of his brothers also served as a sergeant with Chicago Police Department.
Incident Recorded under Chicago Police Department RD #HJ240977.
On May 24, 2005, Sergeant O'Reilly's star was retired by Superintendent Philip J. Cline and enshrined in the Superintendent's Honored Star Case, located in the lobby at Chicago Police Headquarters, 3510 South Michigan Avenue.
Sometime between January 2007 and 2010, the 2700 block of West North Shore Avenue was dedicated as “Honorary Sergeant Philip O’Reilly Avenue.” Two brown honorary street signs were erected. Both signs were located at the intersection of North Shore Avenue and Fairfield Avenue, one on the northeast corner and the other on the southwest corner in heart of the West Ridge community where Sergeant O’Reilly lived.