Patrolman Leo Pavlak

Patrolman Leo Pavlak

South St. Paul Police Department, Minnesota

End of Watch Wednesday, August 30, 1933

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Leo Pavlak

Patrolman Leo Pavlak was shot and killed during a robbery of a payroll while exiting the post office on Concord Street in South St. Paul.

Patrolman Pavlak was escorting two messengers from the post office when a car pulled up, emitting a lot of smoke, and two subjects got out. Patrolman Pavlak complied with their orders to put his hands up. At that time, another patrolman came around the corner, and the men opened fire on him, striking him several times. Then without warning, the man covering Patrolman Pavlak shot him in the head with a shotgun.

The shooter was Arthur Barker, brother of Fred Barker of the infamous Barker-Karpis Gang.

Patrolman Pavlak had served with the South St. Paul Police Department for only four months. He was survived by his wife and two children. His son served as a St. Paul police officer, and two of his grandsons and a great-grandson also served with Minnesota law enforcement agencies.

He is buried in Cavalry Cemetery in Saint Paul, Minnesota.

The Post Office was renamed the Officer Leo Pavlak Post Office in his honor.


  • Age 38
  • Tour 4 months
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Shotgun
  • Offender Killed during an attempted prison break


Most Recent Reflection

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God bless.

And only 4 months on the job, what a hell of shift.

Survived by a wonderful family with LEOs too! You cannot simply stop a Slav, God will always have our backs in the end so long as we're faithful.

Fellow Slav

November 1, 2023

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