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Deputy Marshal Ralph J. Zahnle | Harbor View Police Department, Ohio Harbor View Police Department, Ohio

Deputy Marshal

Ralph J. Zahnle

Harbor View Police Department, Ohio

End of Watch: Thursday, November 7, 1929

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 33

Tour: 3 months

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Rifle

Offender: Sentenced to 19 years

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Deputy Marshal Zahnle was shot and killed as he and his partner attempted to stop two vehicles suspected of transporting liquor through town. They had spotted the vehicles on Sylvania Avenue and drove ahead to the intersection of Sylvania Avenue and Jackman Road.

As the first vehicle passed their location they attempted to pull out. The second vehicle purposely rammed their car and the occupants immediately opened fire with rifles. The suspects fired over 20 rounds into the vehicle, fatally wounding Deputy Marshal Zahnle. His partner escaped injury by taking cover on the car's floorboard. The suspects then fled on foot.

Four suspects were eventually apprehended. One was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to 19 years and 11 months in prison on April 15, 1930.

Deputy Marshal Zahnle was a US Army veteran of WWI and had served with the Harbor View Police Department for only 3 months. He was survived by his wife and three young children.

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It touches my heart to see people, 80 years later, remembering and thanking my grandfather, a man I sadly never met. He left a strong family line with my father, his name sake.

grand daughter
September 10, 2012


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