Police Officer Charles T. Smith

Police Officer Charles T. Smith

Milwaukee Police Department, Wisconsin

End of Watch Wednesday, January 31, 1973

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Charles T. Smith

Police Officers Charles Smith and Gerald Hempe were shot and killed during a traffic stop.

While attempting to arrest the driver of the vehicle, a struggle ensued. During the struggle, a bystander who witnessed the stop walked up to the officers and opened fire, striking them both in the neck and head. The bystander had nothing to do with the stop.

The suspect was convicted of two counts of first-degree murder and sentenced to two consecutive life sentences on June 12, 1973. He was denied parole in 2010. As of October 16, 2022, he was still in prison. He has a parole hearing on May 11, 2023.

Officer Smith was a United States Navy veteran and had served with the Milwaukee Police Department for eight months. He was survived by his wife.


  • Age 24
  • Tour 8 months
  • Badge Not available
  • Military Veteran

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Gun; Unknown type
  • Offender Sentenced to life

ambush, traffic stop

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace always knowing that your service and sacrifice will never, ever be forgotten by your law enforcement brethren.

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

January 31, 2021

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