Trooper Phillip A. Black

Trooper Phillip A. Black

Florida Highway Patrol, Florida

End of Watch Friday, February 20, 1976

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Phillip A. Black

Trooper Phillip Black was shot and killed while investigating a suspicious vehicle that contained narcotics at a rest stop on I-95 south of Hillsborough Boulevard in Deerfield Beach, Florida.

During the stop at least one of the subjects in the car opened fire, killing Trooper Black. Corporal Donald Irwin, of the Ontario Provincial Police, Canada, was riding along with Trooper Black while on vacation. When Corporal Irwin went to assist Trooper Black he was also shot and killed.

One of the subjects in the vehicle was on parole.

Two men and a woman were arrested and charged with their murders. One of the men was convicted of capital murder and executed on May 4th, 1990.

Trooper Black had served with the Florida Highway Patrol for nine years.


  • Age 39
  • Tour 9 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Executed in 1990

narcotics, parolee, suspicious vehicle

Most Recent Reflection

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This may be a little late in coming but has to be contributed. Time has slipped by and it has been forty four years since Phil’s passing and fifty four years since our service together but he has never been forgotten. At the time of 3rd Force Reconnaissance Company’s forming and activation in October of 1965, our team consisted of Staff Sergeant Black as team leader, Ozzie Austin (retired Florida police office now deceased), John Borst (retired NIS agent) and myself. The unit was formed specifically for deep reconnaissance operations just below the DMZ in Vietnam. They selected only the best officers and leaders for this unit and Phil, coming from 2nd Force Recon Co., stood out as the best of the best. For the six months of initial training before his back injury at jungle warfare training in Panama and ultimate medical discharge from the Marines, Phil was instrumental in forging us into an effective reconnaissance team that enabled us to survive thirteen months of Vietnam jungle warfare. Several years later I, along with Tom Nicholson (USMC ret.) ,was able to visit Phil in the Keys and get a ride in his rickety patrol car and spend the weekend with him and his family. I served 29 years in the military and never witnessed a Marine more dedicated and qualified than Phil. His expertise in amphibious reconnaissance benefited the entire company during our training cycle and was surely passed on to many other Marines over the years. Mostly he was a friend, a loyal family man and a Marines Marine. I'm sure he carried this same dedication into his career as a police officer. May he rest in peace. Semper Fidelis

Marine Gunner Ron Lauzon, CWO-4, USMC (R
Radioman, Team 6-1, 3rd ForReconCo

March 29, 2020

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