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Constable James S. McElligott | Lake Township Police Department, Illinois Lake Township Police Department, Illinois


James S. McElligott

Lake Township Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch: Sunday, December 9, 1877

Bio & Incident Details

Age: Not available

Tour: Not available

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 12/5/1877

Weapon: Handgun; Revolver

Offender: Acquitted

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Constable James McElligott succumbed to a gunshot wound sustained four days earlier while attempting to serve a writ of replevin to seize furniture from a woman's home on Rush Street.

He knew of the woman's tendency towards violence so he employed a ruse to gain entry to her home. Once inside the woman recognized him as a constable and went into her basement as he began reading the warrant. She returned from the basement holding a revolver. As he continued to read the warrant the woman shot him once in the abdomen.

Constable McElligott was taken to a local doctor's home for treatment. He was then moved to his own home where his wife and the doctor tended to his wound for the next four days as his condition worsened. He passed away as a result of his wound four days after being shot.

The woman who shot him was acquitted of charges as it was determined the ruse Constable McElligott employed to serve the warrant was considered trespassing.

Constable McElligott had served as the elected constable of Lake Township for only eight months. He was survived by his wife.

Lake Township was annexed by the city of Chicago in 1889.

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Constable McElligott"s story was read in Richton Park Police Department's roll call on 2-20-17 to honor him.

Sgt. James Galvan
February 20, 2017


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