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Chief of Police Ernest Joseph Leatherbury, Sr. | Crisfield Police Department, Maryland Crisfield Police Department, Maryland

Chief of Police

Ernest Joseph Leatherbury, Sr.

Crisfield Police Department, Maryland

End of Watch: Friday, February 21, 2003

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 55

Tour: 31 years

Badge # Chief

Cause: Heart attack

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Chief Ernest Leatherbury suffered a fatal heart attack at 1730 hours, approximately one hour after helping other officers subdue a suspect in front of the police station.

The suspect who had been arrested for assault, refused to go into the station and had to be forced inside by the chief and other officers. Chief Leatherbury collapsed at a meeting approximately one hour after the incident.

Chief Leatherbury had been with his agency for six years and had been with the Maryland State Police for 25 years. He is survived by his wife, three sons, five grandchildren, and nine siblings.

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As a new State Trooper in 1989, I was understandably nervous about my new career. I was part of a new group of troopers that had just graduated from the academy. Having been assigned to Centerville Barrack, my Commander was Lt. Ernest J. Leatherbury. Well, I didn't do so well as a trooper. I made mistakes, but kept going. At some point during the process, I decided to resign. During a meeting, in which I made my intentions known, Lt. Leatherbury said something to me that has stayed with me for a very long time. He said, Trooper Moses, I had you picked out as the best of the bunch. At the time, I was not sure abut my decision to leave the MSP. In the years since, I have often thought of Lt. Leatherbury's kind words. When I heard of his passing, I was taken back to those days. It breaks my heart that I left the Maryland State Police. Even more so, it breaks my heart that I never took the time to thank this very kind man for his encouraging words to me that day. As I remember Lt. Leatherbury, he was a fair man with a high degree of integrity. In my opinion, he was the very essence of what a Maryland State Trooper should be. I regret not having stayed on and following his example.

May he rest with the Lord.

Trooper Peter M. Moses (Resigned).
Former State Trooper MSP.
July 21, 2016


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