Officer Abigail J. Powlett

Officer Abigail J. Powlett

Plainfield Police Department, New Jersey

End of Watch Friday, March 15, 1985

Abigail J. Powlett

Officer Powlett was shot and killed by a suspect who had overpowered her and taken her as a hostage. Officer Powlett and another officer had responded to a call involving a man with a gun. The two officers made contact with the suspect and as Officer Powlett searched him the man began to resist and gained control of Officer Powlett's service weapon.

The suspect held Officer Powlett on the ground with the gun pressed against her head. Other officers responded to the scene and immediately began negotiating with the suspect. Without warning, the suspect shot Officer Powlett in the head, killing her. The other officers returned fire, fatally wounding the suspect.

Officer Powlett had served with the Plainfield Police Department for 3 years. She was survived by her mother and two children.


  • Age 33
  • Tour 3 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Officer's handgun
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

View all 47 Reflections

Abby was my best friend and partner. Her passing was the darkest time of my life. We attended Rutgers together at night school and that was when we really got to know each other. After her passing, I ran away to forget and bury my grief and sorrow. Today, my heart still aches. I've moved on but the pain and love still remains. I know she is still smiling.

Richard Rodd

June 16, 2017

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