Patrolman Thomas J. Riley

Patrolman Thomas J. Riley

Cambridge Police Department, Massachusetts

End of Watch Saturday, November 20, 1920

Thomas J. Riley

Patrolman Riley was shot and killed while trying to disperse a group of drunk men. As he turned to leave one of the men produced a revolver and shot Patrolman Riley in the head.
Patrolman Riley had been with the agency for eight years.

A 25-year-old suspect was arrested, convicted of murder, and sentenced to death. Governor Channing H. Cox commuted his sentence to life. He was pardoned on December 24, 1953.


  • Age 34
  • Tour 8 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; Revolver
  • Offender Pardoned in 1953

Most Recent Reflection

View all 8 Reflections

It has now been 97 years since your senseless murder. I find is a shame that your killer was allowed the freedom you were denied, simply for breaking up an unruly crowd.

I pray you are resting comfortably, Brother. God Bless.

Ptl. Jim Leahy, Jr.
Harvard University Police Department

November 20, 2017

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