Patrolman David W. Rickman

Patrolman David W. Rickman

Roanoke City Police Department, Virginia

End of Watch Saturday, April 12, 1986

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David W. Rickman

Patrolman David Rickman was shot and killed after he and his partner responded to a domestic disturbance call at 5 a.m.

The officers were in the process of arresting the female subject's ex-boyfriend when she came to the door with a handgun and discharged the weapon. The round passed through Officer Rickman's left arm and entered his chest through an opening in his vest. He was transported to a local hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries a short time later.

The woman claimed the gun discharged accidentally. She was convicted of manslaughter and received a 10-year prison sentence.

Patrolman Rickman was a United States Army veteran and had served with the Roanoke City Police Department for less than one year. He is survived by his son, father, mother, two brothers, and three sisters.


  • Age 23
  • Tour 11 months
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Sentenced to 10 years


Most Recent Reflection

View all 33 Reflections

As a young Private, I remember what a physical stud Cpl Rickman was! He broke or sprained his ankle only two or three days before he was supposed to go to one of the Army's toughest schools at the time, Recondo school. Our Platoon Sergeant and Squad Leader called me in and asked if I wanted the spot?
I didn't want to disappoint them, but I remember thinking, damn, Rickman is a stud, I don't know if I can do what he could do.
Cpl Rickman came to my barracks room, talked to me and reassured me that I could. Even if it's only on two days notice.
I went and graduated, largely because of David Rickman's leadership and encouragement. He was a true leader!

MSG (r) Steve Szwajkowski
US Army

February 19, 2024

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