Paul Joseph Ernst
Marion County Sheriff's Department
Saturday, March 21, 1992

Age: 55
Served: 26 years, 11 months
Badge #: 14
Panel 50E, Line 18
Panel L16, Line 1

Incident Details

Cause of Death:
Motorcycle accident
Date/Time of Incident:
Saturday, March 21, 1992
07:30 pm
Incident to Death Duration:
Same day
Incident Location:
Capitol Avenue and St. Clair Street, Indianapolis
Incident County:
Incident Township:
Weapon Used:
Suspect Disposition:
Burial Place:
Crown Hill Cemetery, Indianapolis

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   Major Paul Ernst was killed in a single-vehicle accident while on duty.

   He and another motorcycle officer had just escorted the Richmond High School boys basketball team to Hinkle Fieldhouse at Butler University for the evening semi-state tournament.

   They were returning from their assignment when Mayor Ernst lost control of his motorcycle and crashed. He was taken to Wishard Memorial Hospital where he died.

   Major Ernst was second in command of the Law Enforcement Division and survived by his wife and daughter.


Sagamore of the Wabash

In 1991, Major Ernst received the distinguished award from Governor Evan Bayh.
The Sagamore of the Wabash, created during the term of Governor Ralph F. Gates (19451949), is an honorary award bestowed to those who have contributed greatly to Hoosier heritage.
Major Ernst is the only known fallen officer of our state who has been a recipient of this award.

The responsibilities of the Marion County Sheriff's Department – Law Enforcement Division (1822–2006) are now under the jurisdiction of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department.

View all fallen officers from the
Marion County Sheriff's Department

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Major Paul Joseph Ernst - Marion County Sheriff's Department -