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Patrol Officer James Gatzounas | Holyoke Police Department, Massachusetts Holyoke Police Department, Massachusetts

Patrol Officer

James Gatzounas

Holyoke Police Department, Massachusetts

End of Watch: Saturday, January 1, 1977

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 29

Tour: 1 year, 6 months

Badge # Not available

Military veteran

Cause: Assault

Weapon: Person

Offender: Charged with manslaughter

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Officer James Gatzounas died after being assaulted as he and other officers responded to a fight at a New Year's Eve street party. As Officer Gatzounas attempted to place one of the suspects under arrest he was repeatedly kicked and punched, and he went into cardiac arrest.

Two suspects, ages 19 and 17, were charged with first degree murder. When Officer Gatzounas' autopsy revealed he died of cardiac arrest instead of injuries from the beating, the charges were reduced to manslaughter.

Officer Gatzounas had been with the agency for 18 months and had previously served with the United States Army during the Vietnam War. He was survived by his wife and child.

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To my uncle Jimmy, it was not fair what happened to you, and we know the real truth, I miss the days of watching football with you , my brothers and dad. I wish you were there as we all grew old, I miss you and say hi to dad ( your brother ).

Matt
January 8, 2015

 

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