Detective Herbert Ray Sullivan

Detective Herbert Ray Sullivan

St. Petersburg Police Department, Florida

End of Watch Monday, August 18, 1980

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Herbert Ray Sullivan

Detective Sullivan was shot and killed while conducting an undercover drug buy with his partner. Detective Sullivan was the money man in the operation while his partner attempted to purchase the drugs. As Detective Sullivan sat in a pickup truck one of the suspects ambushed him, stole the money, and fled. The 23-year-old shooter was apprehended in Tampa a short time later and sentenced to life. His accomplice was apprehended in Spain several years later and extradited back to Florida where he was also sentenced to life.

The shooter died in a South Florida prison on January 4, 2015.

Detective Sullivan had been with the agency for six years and was survived by his wife, parents, two brothers, sister and nephew.


  • Age 30
  • Tour 6 years
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun; .38 caliber
  • Offender Died in prison

Most Recent Reflection

View all 20 Reflections

I just wanted you to know that every time an officer is killed anywhere, my thoughts go back to you. My dad was the police reporter for the Indy and he loved and respected you all so much. He loved his job because you all made him feel like he was one of you. At his funeral in 2013 (age 86) he received a gorgeous huge flower arrangement from the retired patrol officers and detectives. Pretty amazing that almost 40 years went by and he was still remembered. I know right where I was when I heard the news about you and raced to my dads' house. He was devastated and it took years for him to get close to other officers for fear of losing them. Thank you and all of the officers
who do a job most of us would not touch. Much love, April

April Rutan
Daughter of Police Reporter who was friends with Herbie and most LEO¨

January 14, 2021

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