Patrolman Walter J. Pruehs

Patrolman Walter J. Pruehs

Cleveland Division of Police, Ohio

End of Watch Monday, October 18, 1920

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Walter J. Pruehs

Patrolman Walter Pruehs was shot and killed while questioning three suspicious men he encountered at West 25th Street and Henritze Avenue while walking to work. During the questioning he instructed the men to walk with him to a police call box so that he could call for backups. As they walked the men suddenly produced revolvers, turned around, and one of them opened fire, striking Patrolman Pruehs in the abdomen. Patrolman Pruehs was able to return fire but did not strike the suspects. Patrolman Pruehs was able to make it to the call box and call for help. He was taken to a local hospital where he succumbed to his wounds that evening.

It was discovered that the three suspects were also wanted in connection with the burglary of Ott Cut-Rate Pharmacy at 3661 Fulton Road, where burglars carried away a three-hundred-pound safe containing six hundred dollars in cash and 100 postage stamps.

Patrolman Pruehs had been with the agency for five years and was survived by his wife and two children.


  • Age 26
  • Tour 5 years
  • Badge 709

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Revolver
  • Offender Not available

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NEVER FORGET! On behalf of the Ohio Attorneys General Bureau of Criminal Identification & Investigation, we honor the dedicated service and ultimate sacrifice of Patrolman Walter J. Pruehs of the Cleveland Division of Police, Ohio and the additional 68 American Peace Officers who have paid the ultimate sacrifice on this date in history.

Superintendent Joe Morbitzer
Ohio Attorney General, Bureau of Criminal Investigation

October 18, 2022

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