Officer
David S. Richards
Indianapolis Police Department
Tuesday, January 3, 1922

Age: 75
Served: 39 years, 9 months
Badge #: 75
Panel 52E, Line 29 (2016)
Included (2016)

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Gunfire
Date/Time of Incident:
Wednesday, July 2, 1879
10:00 am
Incident to Death Duration:
42 years, 185 days
Incident Location:
Fall Creek Parkway and Capitol Avenue, Indianapolis
Incident County:
Marion
Incident Township:
Center
Weapon Used:
Revolver
Suspect Disposition:
Pardoned
Burial Place:
Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis

   Officer David Richards died as the result of a complication of a gunshot wound suffered 42½ years earlier.

   He was searching for a gang of horse thieves with two other officers when they interrupted an unrelated gang of four burglars who were dividing the spoils of their crime. The men opened fire and Officer Richards was shot in the left foot during the ensuing gunbattle but survived.

   He was able to return to duty but was medically retired in 1911 due to continued pain and medical issues with his foot and leg. On January 1, 1922, his leg was amputated and he died two days later from complications of the surgery.

   All four suspects were eventually apprehended. The shooter was found guilty of assault, fined $50 and sentenced to six months in jail but was pardoned before his time was served. The other men were sentenced from 30 days in jail to two years in prison.

   Officer Richards was survived by his wife, daughter and two sons.

Historical Notes

• Officer Richards is the oldest known officer killed in the line of duty in Indiana.
• He is the longest serving known officer killed in the line of duty in Indiana.
• Officer Richards has the longest incident to line of duty death duration in Indiana.
• He also has the fourth-longest incident to line of duty death duration in the United States.


The responsibilities of the Indianapolis Police Department (1854–2006) are now under the jurisdiction of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.


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Officer David S. Richards - Indianapolis Police Department - INLEM.org