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Officer Richard Joseph Barth | Downers Grove Police Department, Illinois Downers Grove Police Department, Illinois


Richard Joseph Barth

Downers Grove Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch: Monday, March 18, 1974

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 25

Tour: 2 years

Badge # 11

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Handgun

Offender: Released in 2003

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Officer Richard Barth was shot and killed by a 13-year-old suspect while questioning him and another youth about suspicious activity in a park.

Unbeknownst to Officer Barth, the two boys had just committed a burglary and were going through the stolen items when Officer Barth interrupted them. The suspect who shot Officer Barth was convicted of murder and sentenced to 50 to 100 years in prison. He was released in 2003.

Officer Barth had served with the Downers Grove Police Department for two years. He was survived by his wife.

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Most Recent Reflection

Growing up on the same block as your mother, Grandma used to tell me all sorts of stories about you. She loves you so much. My favorite story of you is when you volunteered yourself for community service in the aftermath of the Oak Lawn tornado. She told me you stayed over at a buddy's house for almost week and helped clean up debris and helped people anyway you could have. Grandma used that story to teach me at a young age how service to others is so important and how we should volunteer whenever we can. I guess that's why I'm still in the public safety/ medical field. I think of you often and will never forget your valor and dedication to the community which you served so greatly. We all love you so much.

Great Nephew
January 17, 2017


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