Patrolman Howard B. Taft

Patrolman Howard B. Taft

Elyria Police Department, Ohio

End of Watch Tuesday, August 18, 1942

Howard B. Taft

Patrolman Howard Taft was shot and killed after arresting a man for drunk driving. Unbeknownst to Patrolman Taft the suspect had just murdered a prostitute as well.

He was driving an off duty officer home when they stopped at the scene of an accident. After determining the driver was drunk Patrolman Taft began to drive the suspect's vehicle to the station as the off duty officer drove the patrol car back. After driving only 100 yards Patrolman Taft stopped to free a piece of the car that was dragging on the ground. The suspect then took the keys from the car and was confronted by Patrolman Taft who ordered him to release the keys. The suspect then returned to the vehicle and opened fire with a weapon mortally wounding Patrolman Taft.

Patrolman Taft returned fire hitting the suspect six times killing him. The body of the prostitute was later found in the trunk of the vehicle.

Patrolman Taft was survived by his wife and son.


  • Age 29
  • Tour Not available
  • Badge Not available

Incident Details

  • Cause Gunfire
  • Weapon Handgun
  • Offender Shot and killed

Most Recent Reflection

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Rest in peace Patrolman Taft. Thank you for your honesty and bravery. Was wondering if you were related to President Taft?

Rabbi Lewis S. Davis

August 16, 2017

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