Bio & Incident Details
Tour: 15 years
Badge # Not available
Weapon: Blunt object; Chair
Offender: Sentenced to life
Captain Walter Peterson was beaten to death with a chair after being attacked by four inmates in the exercise room at Western Penitentiary in Pittsburgh. He had just been promoted to Captain three hours before the attack.
One of the suspects was in prison for murdering Officer Joseph Zanella, of the Verona Police Department, on September 19, 1969. He hanged himself in his cell on December 6, 1978.
The other three inmates were convicted of first degree murder and got a life term added to their sentences. One had recently stabbed a fellow inmate to death. Another one was in prison for murdering two women near Bedford.
Captain Peterson had served with the agency for 15 years, and served with the United States Air Force in the Korean War. He was survived by his wife and son.
Related Line of Duty Deaths
Police Officer Joseph Paul Zanella