Trooper Charles Clinton Black

Trooper Charles Clinton Black

Maine State Police, Maine

End of Watch Thursday, July 9, 1964

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Charles Clinton Black

Trooper Charles Black was shot and killed while responding to a bank robbery at First National Bank of Biddeford in South Berwick, Maine just before 10 a.m.

Trooper Black was off-duty that day, but was required to report to the municipal courthouse behind the bank to prosecute a traffic violation. He was in uniform when he responded to shouts from civilians on the street that the bank was being robbed.

As the two suspects ran from the bank one of them spotted Trooper Black and shot him five times. A bystander grabbed Trooper Black's service revolver and apprehended one of the suspects who had slipped and fallen behind. The other suspect was captured later that day in New Hampshire.

Both suspects were convicted of Trooper Black's murder and sentenced to life in prison. Both were convicted felons who had been released from prison - one of them only a week prior to the fatal bank robbery. Following their life sentence for Trooper Black's murder, both men were paroled in 1972.

Trooper Black was a U.S. Air Force veteran and had served with the Maine State Police for six years. He was survived by his pregnant wife, who gave birth to a son, by his two other young sons, and by his sister and brother.

The agency's annual Trooper of the Year award was named in his honor.


  • Age 28
  • Tour 6 years
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .22 caliber
  • Offender Paroled in 1972


Most Recent Reflection

View all 29 Reflections

I was only a 3 year-old and a resident of South Berwick when this happened. But, I used to deliver the newspaper to the police station on Main St and saw Trooper Black's memorial plaque on the wall of the station and thought of him often when my grandfather solemnly told me what had happened.
Without dedicated LEO, this country would be in total chaos instead of partial chaos. Currently in South Florida, I cannot even cross the street in a crosswalk without the risk of getting hit. We need to maintain higher standards and let LEO do their jobs without constantly questioning their intent.... they serve and protect us.

Chris Holmes

November 7, 2021

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