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Sergeant John Charles Hawley | Elmira Police Department, New York Elmira Police Department, New York


John Charles Hawley

Elmira Police Department, New York

End of Watch: Sunday, January 8, 1984

Bio & Incident Details

Age: 42

Tour: 17 years

Badge # Not available

Cause: Gunfire (Accidental)

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Sergeant Hawley was accidentally shot and killed by a fellow officer while retreating from a shootout with two heavily armed suspects. The two men had just been released from prison and were planning on a crime spree to murder police officers and district attorney staff members. After abducting a cab driver the officers located the two in an apartment.

As the SWAT team attempted to enter the apartment they came under heavy fire and two officers were wounded. Sergeant Hawley took up a position in the living room to offer cover to the other members who were retreating. The then escaped through a living room window and began to run from the apartment complex when he was struck. Another officer who had been guarding the perimeter for 45 minutes in sub-zero temperatures attempted to reposition himself on the ground and his shotgun discharged, striking Sergeant Hawley. The suspects later committed a murder-suicide, ending the standoff.

Sergeant Hawley had been with the agency for 17 years and was survived by his wife, son, and daughter.

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John finally the truth has come out and I am very aware of who the officer was that shot you. I just wish that the truth had come out much sooner. I have grieved the loss of a great friend for all these years as have many others my 4 children know your name with one son a federal police officer and one son a NYS corrections officer you saved my life for which I am eternally grateful for. I figured out some of this when I took firearms in college those of us who called you friend will never find peace as a result of your death and there will be no comfort. As it just seems that not a day goes by where someone is not wishing you were here. With the love of a friend and utmost respect. Tina Marie Peterson Castle. Missing you always

Tina Castle
March 3, 2017


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