Patrolman John Rowe

Patrolman John Rowe

Chicago Police Department, Illinois

End of Watch Thursday, August 6, 1914

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John Rowe

Patrolman John Rowe was shot and killed in a gun battle with armed offenders on Wood Street.

Patrolman Rowe attempted to apprehend a gang of armed offenders robbing ticket agents in elevated train stations. During their crime spree, they had killed one agent and wounded three other citizens. Patrolman Rowe assisted fellow officers engaged in a running gun battle with the offenders. When Patrolman Rowe attempted to stop the gunmen, he and a ticket agent were shot. Patrolman Rowe and the ticket agent died of the injuries they sustained.

Four suspects were eventually apprehended. One was convicted of both murders and sentenced to life in prison, one was acquitted, and the other two were given concurrent sentences with other prison terms they were serving. One of those two suspects, age 19, convicted of manslaughter, was released in 1917, but went back to prison a few months later after being convicted of armed robbery. He was released again in February of 1932. On May 9, 1932, he was shot and killed by the owner of a Chicago florist when he and three others tried to rob his establishment. The 24-year-old suspect sentenced to life escaped from prison in 1918. He and others he escaped with were responsible for several bank robberies until he was captured and sent back to prison in 1921. On March 27, 1935, he died in prison from a heart attack.

Patrolman Rowe had served with the agency for 30 years. He was survived by his wife and daughter.


  • Age 53
  • Tour 30 years
  • Badge 3045

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Not available

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Rest in peace knowing that no passage of time will ever erase your service and sacrifice.

Detective Cpl/3 Steven Rizzo
Delaware State Police (Retired)

August 6, 2020

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