Sergeant John Victor Young

Sergeant John Victor Young

San Francisco Police Department, California

End of Watch Sunday, August 29, 1971

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John Victor Young

Sergeant John Young was shot and killed inside the Ingleside District Police Station.

While the police station was emptied of officers who had responded to an earlier bombing at another location, two men entered the police station and stuck a 12-gauge shotgun through an opening in the bullet proof glass that separated the waiting area from the rest of the police station. The suspects fired between five and ten shotgun blasts, killing Sergeant Young and wounding a civilian employee of the department. Both gunmen then fled the station house and into a waiting getaway car. Both suspects were later determined to be members of the Black Liberation Army.

Seven suspects were eventually apprehended and charged with Sergeant Young's murder. The charges were dropped in 1975 when evidence surfaced that confessions obtained might have been the result of torture. Two of the suspects were charged with the murders of Patrolman Waverly Jones and Patrolman Joseph A. Piagentiai of the New York City Police Department on May 21, 1971. Both were convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to life in prison.

In 1999 Sergeant Young's case was reopened when new forensic evidence surfaced. On January 23, 2007, the original seven suspects were again arrested and charged with murder. On July 5, 2009, charges against four of the suspects were dropped. The two suspects who murdered the two New York police officers were convicted of manslaughter and conspiracy to commit voluntary manslaughter. They were sentenced to the time they served while awaiting trial and were returned to New York. Charges against the last suspect were dropped on August 18, 2011.

Sergeant Young was survived by his wife.

The San Francisco Police Station Ingleside is located on Sgt. John V. Young Lane which is named after Sergeant Young.

The Black Liberation Army was a violent, radical group that attempted to fight for independence from the United States government in the late 1960's and early 1970's. The BLA was responsible for the murders of more than 10 police officers around the country. They were also responsible for violent attacks around the country that left many police officers wounded.


  • Age 51
  • Tour 22 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun; 12 gauge
  • Offender Seven suspects arrested in 2007

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace Sergeant Young.

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

May 22, 2022

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