Sergeant Kenneth Melvin Steil

Sergeant Kenneth Melvin Steil

Detroit Police Department, Michigan

End of Watch Saturday, September 17, 2016

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Kenneth Melvin Steil

Captain Kenneth Steil succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained on Sept. 12, 2016, while chasing a subject who had just attempted to carjack a vehicle at approximately 11:00 p.m.

As officers arrived on scene at the carjacking at a gas station at 7 Mile East and Hayes Street, the main suspect fled on foot. As Captain Steil pursued him the subject turned and fired a sawed-off shotgun, striking Captain Steil in the shoulder. Two other officers were able to subdue the man and take him into custody.

It was later determined that the subject had shot his own father in the foot the previous night. He was charged with two counts of attempted murder and several other felonies.

Captain Steil was transported to St. John Hospital where it was initially believed he would recover, however, he experienced complications and died on Sept. 17, 2016.

The subject who shot him was subsequently charged with the murder of a peace officer, first-degree murder, resisting an officer causing death, and multiple other felony charges.

Captain Steil served with the Detroit Police Department for 20 years and was assigned to the 9th District. He was posthumously promoted to captain and is survived by his wife and two young sons.


  • Age 46
  • Tour 20 years
  • Badge 54

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Incident Date Monday, September 12, 2016
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Sentenced to 40-75 years

domestic, foot pursuit, robbery

Most Recent Reflection

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Captain Steil is my silent partner. He served with courage, honor, and integrity and no doubt left the city a better place. As I study the law enforcement code of ethics, it became apparent that Captain Steil embodied every one of those virtues. It is an absolute honor to have such a warrior be my silent partner and I look forward to telling people about him. I will keep Captain Steil’s family and friends in my prayers.

S.P.O Brian Bidwell
Detroit Police Department

May 11, 2024

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