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Patrolman Michael P. Connors | Richmond Police Department, Virginia Richmond Police Department, Virginia

Patrolman

Michael P. Connors

Richmond Police Department, Virginia

End of Watch: Tuesday, November 13, 1979

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 23

Tour: 1 year

Badge # 192

Cause: Gunfire

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Offender: Four sentenced to life

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Patrolman Connors was shot and killed after making a traffic stop in downtown Richmond on a car travelling the wrong way on a one way street. Unbeknownst to Patrolman Connors, the four occupants of the vehicle were recent parolees and had just committed an armed robbery of a convenience store on the other end of the block.

The suspects thought that Patrolman Connors had witnessed the robbery and opened fire on him, striking him in the face four times. He was found by his lieutenant minutes later. All four suspects were sentenced to life. The shooter had originally been sentenced to death but had the sentence commuted to life in a second trial.

Patrolman Connors had served with the Richmond Police Department for 1 year and had just received word that he was going to be hired by an agency in his home state of New York. He was survived by his parents.

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ANY ANGER WE STILL HOLD IS A WASTED EMOTION EVEN OUR ANGER TOWARDS THE MEN WHO TOOK HIS LIFE. THEIR JUDGMENT DAY IS COMING. THE 7-11 EMPLOYEE WHO JUST FOLLOWED ORDERS AND CALLED HIS MANAGER TO REPORT THE ROBBERY WAS NO MORE RESPONSIBLE THAN I WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR MICHAELL’S DEATH. THEY WERE JUST PEOPLE. THEY SIMPLY WERE PRESENT IN THAT TIME AND PLACE TO MAKE THE CHOICES THAT WERE MADE TO THE BEST OF THEIR ABILITIES. SO MANY PPL WHOM WE NEVER EVEN IMAGINED HAVE CARRIED AND CONTINUE TO CARRY THIS BURDEN OF GUILT AND REMORSE AND “IF ONLY” FOR SO MANY YEARS AND RESOLVED NOTHING, CREATED NOTHING, MADE NOTHING BETTER FOR ANYONE NOT EVEN FOR OURSELVES. NOT ONE OF US IS GUILTY OF CAUSING MICHAEL’S DEATH BY OUR ABSENCE THUS ALLOWING IT TO HAPPEN. WE ARE ONLY GUILTY OF HAVING CREATED THE MAGICAL THINKING THAT LED US TO BELIEVE THAT OUR PRESENCE WOULD HAVE MADE A DIFFERENCE SOMEHOW. OUR MAGICAL THINKING ALLOWED US TO CHANGE EVENTS, PPL, TIMING, CHOICES AND FATE’S CRUEL BLOW TO SUIT OUR OWN INDIVIDUAL NEEDS AT THE TIME. THIRTY FIVE YEARS LATER, WE MUST UNDERSTAND THAT WE DID MAKE A DIFFERENCE. WE LOVED HIM AND WE HONOR HIM WITH EACH PASSING DAY THAT WE REMEMBER THIS FINE YOUNG MAN AND RECALL HIS KNIGHTLY SENSE OF HONOR AND NOBILITY AND THE COMPASSION HE FELT FOR HIS FELLOW MAN. TRULY HE WAS THE BEST OF US.

Patrolman Eva B. Miller-Cagle
RICHMOND POLICE DEPT.
CITY OF RICHMOND, VIRGINIA
April 11, 2015

 

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