Police Officer William Schmedding, Jr.

Police Officer William Schmedding, Jr.

Detroit Police Department, Michigan

End of Watch Friday, December 31, 1971

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William Schmedding, Jr.

Officer William Schmedding was shot and killed after responding to a report of a robbery in progress at Sam's Loans, an area pawn shop at 1:40 p.m.

Officer Schmedding interrupted three suspects who fired on him. Officer Schmedding emptied his revolver trying to return fire but was killed while trying to reload. One suspect was shot and killed, two were wounded, during a shootout with responding officers.

Although the two wounded suspects were convicted, the convictions were overturned in 1981.

Officer Schmedding served with the Detroit Police Department for 16 years. He was survived by his wife, son, and twin daughters.


  • Age 39
  • Tour 16 years
  • Badge 3003

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Shot and killed


Most Recent Reflection

View all 16 Reflections

One year ago today, October 3rd, seven police officers and sheriff's deputies, where shot upon while attempting to serve a warrant. This happened in Florence, SC. Unfortunately, one city officer and one deputy died doing their job to protect and serve. This incident, when it happened and today, made me reflect on the officers I knew ,attended funerals of, or read about in Detroit. I was born and raised in Detroit and moved to Florence 35 years ago. Coming from Detroit to this small Southern town, I never thought anything this could happen here. Unfortunately, as we know all too well these days, these incidents can happen anywhere!
As I reflected today, Bill Schmedding came to mind. My dad, who was a Detroit Police Officer for 33 years, knew Bill. My mother was very good friends with his widow Chris. We spent time at their house. I remember when he was shot like it was yesterday, instead of 48 years ago. I remember attending his funeral! And, I remember his widow Chris and children.
Officer Schmedding, thank you for service and for your ultimate sacrifice protecting the citizens of Detroit! Thank you to all law enforcement across the country, who serve and protect. And, like today in Florence, SC, we remember those officers who made the ultimate sacrifice serving and protecting their communities.
I pray for all law enforcement, that as they put on their badge, kiss their loved ones good-bye, that they will return home safely when their shift is over.
This has made me think that when we said good-bye to my dad, that it could have been for the last time. Thankfully, he came home to us. It is not lost on me, those like Bill, did not come home to their families!
Bill and his family were great people. I will remember my parents' friendship with them! Bill Schmedding, "Gone but not forgotten!"

Peggy Hawkins
Friend of the family; Daughter of Retired Lt. Gerald Biscup, 1954-1985

October 3, 2019

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