Patrolman Joseph C. Reiser

Patrolman Joseph C. Reiser

Boston Police Department, Massachusetts

End of Watch Sunday, January 20, 1918

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Joseph C. Reiser

Patrolman Joseph Reiser was shot and killed while attempting to apprehend a burglar in an apartment building on Jersey Street in Back Bay.

Patrolman Reiser had observed the suspect, who matched the description of a lookout, and went to investigate. The suspect opened fire with a revolver, striking Patrolman Reiser four times, before fleeing.

The suspect was arrested a week later. He was found to be responsible for 80 burglaries. He specialized in stealing jewelry and phonograph records. He was convicted of Patrolman Reisner's murder and sentenced to life in prison.

On May 25, 1920, the suspect broke out of the Massachusetts State Prison along with two other men. He was captured in Chicago on December 24, 1920. On December 24, 1936, his sentence was reduced to 20 years making him eligible for parole a year later. One of the other escapees was serving a 15 to 20 year sentence for the murder of Patrolman Charles E. Deininger of the Boston, Massachusetts Police Department on Febuary 13, 1919. He surrendered to authorities in Middlesex County in August of 1920.

Patrolman Reiser had been employed with the Boston Police Department for ten years.


  • Age 35
  • Tour 10 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to life


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