Bio & Incident Details
Tour: Not available
Badge # Not available
Weapon: Officer's handgun
Offender: Sentenced to life
Sergeant Eilers was shot and killed with his own service weapon after stopping a vehicle for having a dangling license plate. Unbeknownst to Sergeant Eilers, the two brothers in the car, ages 21 and 17, had just committed a burglary at a high school two counties away. The suspects attacked him, beat him, and then shot him with his own weapon.
One of the suspects drove the patrol car to a rock quarrey 20 miles away where he planned to dump the car and the officers body into the 100-foot deep water. He had to abandon the car when he failed to crash through a gate and the car became tangled in the wire mesh. A short time later the patrol car was discovered by a passing motorist.
When the suspect took the patrol car he accidentally ran into the back of his own car knocking off the license plate. Police found the plate which led to the brothers arrest the next day.
The 21 year old suspect had recently been paroled from the Wisconsin State Reformatory after serving two years for burglary. He was convicted of Sergeant Eilers' murder and sentenced to life in prison on September 25, 1962. He was paroled in 1976. In 1982 he was returned to the Wisconsin Pentitentiary following a burglary conviction. On September 19, 1988, he escaped from McNaughton Correctional Institute. A year later he was captured in Nevada after his case aired on the TV show "America's Most Wanted". A judge ordered that his 17 year old brother was to be tried as a juvenile.
Sergeant Eilers was survived by his wife and two children. He was a sergeant who served in the Pacific Theatre with the Army Rangers during World War II. He was awarded the purple heart.