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Private John E. Fessler | Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania


John E. Fessler

Pennsylvania State Police, Pennsylvania

End of Watch: Friday, April 23, 1937

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 32

Tour: 4 years

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire

Incident Date: 4/22/1937

Weapon: Gun; Unknown type

Offender: Committed suicide

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Private Fessler was shot and killed while assisting Montour County deputies arrest a drunken man who had been terrorizing his family. As they approached the home the man opened fire, wounding Private Fessler. The deputies returned fire, wounding the suspect. Private Fessler succumbed to his wounds the following day.

The 51-year-old suspect was convicted of first degree murder and sentenced to death. On February 23, 1940, the day before he was to be executed, he shot and killed himself in the Montour County Jail. The sheriff said eight members of his family had visited him earlier and he suspected that one of them slipped him the .32 caliber pistol.

Private Fessler had been with the agency for four years.

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Pvt. Fessler,
On today, the 79th anniversary of your death I would just like to say thank you for your service and sacrifice for the citizens of the state of Pennsylvania. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.


United States Border Patrol
April 23, 2016


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