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Officer Charles Taylor Smith | California Highway Patrol, California California Highway Patrol, California


Charles Taylor Smith

California Highway Patrol, California

End of Watch: Sunday, September 9, 1956

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 27

Tour: 4 years

Badge # 1359

Military veteran

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Offender: Both shot and killed

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Officer Charles Smith was shot and killed while frisking one of two suspects.

He had just stopped a vehicle for speeding on U.S. Highway 99, near Orland, and decided to investigate further. Unbeknownst to Officer Smith, the two occupants were AWOL Marines who had been on a crime spree. As he frisked one of the men the second man shot him in the back. Although mortally wounded, Officer Smith was able to draw his weapon and fatally shoot both suspects.

Officer Smith had served as a military policeman with the US Marine Corps before joining the California Highway Patrol. He had served with the California Highway Patrol for four years.

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Today, returning home to Phoenix from the Bay Area, I noticed an overpass on I-10 near Palm Springs CA which is dedicated to the memory of Officer Charles Taylor Smith.

Stan Jefferson
Citizen of Arizona
September 18, 2017


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