Police Officer James R. Reifschneider

Police Officer James R. Reifschneider

St. Louis County Police Department, Missouri

End of Watch Saturday, April 30, 1977

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James R. Reifschneider

Police Officer James Reifschneider was struck and killed by a drunk driver while on I-270 one mile west of Lindbergh Boulevard.

He was standing by the driver's side door of a stalled vehicle talking with the driver when a 19-year-old youth struck him and dragged him 150 feet down the roadway. The suspect fled the scene but was found passed out in the back seat of his vehicle parked in front of his residence a short time later. It was later discovered he had crashed into a parked vehicle near his residence before he got home.

The man admitted he had been drinking a lot and did not remember the crash. He was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to six years in prison. Three months later a judge ruled his sentence was too harsh and reduced it to two years.

Officer Reifschneider had served with the St. Louis County Police Department for 16 years. He was survived by his wife, two sons, and daughter.


  • Age 37
  • Tour 16 years
  • Badge 430

Incident Details

  • Cause Vehicular assault
  • Weapon Automobile; Alcohol involved
  • Offender Sentenced to 2 years

disabled motorist, drunk driver

Most Recent Reflection

View all 32 Reflections

It's hard to imagine that it has been 46 years. I recall it all too well. I was a probe. I recall seeing you walk through the 2nd precinct with Roy. Always smiling. Thank you for being a roll model to me on how I should act as a County Police Officer. I think about you and all our fallen brothers and sister. I pray that God is your comfort and that He blesses your family and keeps them safe.

Ret. Officer Dave Gudermuth
St. Louis County Police Dept.

April 30, 2023

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